Dean of Students

Red Square Clark University Worcester MA

Leave of Absence

A student who is in good standing may apply to the Dean of Students Office for a Leave of Absence, after which he or she may return to the University without formal application for readmission. If you feel that you need to take a Leave of Absence, please call the Dean of Students Office at extension 7423 to set up an appointment with a dean. For further information regarding Leaves of Absence, please refer to the information below.

A student on leave of absence is on inactive status at the University. All leaves of absence are approved for one (1) semester at a time and it is the expectation of the University that the student will return to Clark to complete their degree at the end of the leave. You may not take a leave of absence to attend another college; regulations state that you must withdraw from your current school so as not to be dual-enrolled. If you plan to take classes elsewhere, you must fill out a Withdrawal Form rather than a Leave of Absence Form. It is not necessary to reapply for admission in order to return to active status from leave status, but you must inform the Dean of Students Office in writing of your plan to re-enroll. The changes that occur when you take a leave of absence are explained below.

Link to Leave of Absence policy; Voluntary Psychological Medical Leave of Absence Policy

Returning to Clark:
In the semester during which you are on leave, you will receive a notification from the Dean of Students Office asking you to verify your plans for returning. An email will be sent to your Clark email address asking you to either indicate that you plan to return, request an extension of your leave, or notify us that you are withdrawing. It is important you respond to this email, as it serves as the required written notification of your intent to return to active status or to extend your leave. Responding to the email helps us keep track of your status and to ensure that you get the appropriate information to facilitate your enrollment. Failure to respond results in being withdrawn from the University.

Study abroad:
Leaves for the purpose of studying abroad are arranged through the Study Abroad Program.

Advance Registration:
When you take a leave, your course selection for the coming semester is automatically canceled. After you notify us that you are returning you will be sent materials to select your courses in advance. If you have difficulties getting in touch with your faculty advisor, contact Academic Advising at 508-793-7468.

Dropping Courses:
If you take a Leave of absence during the course of a semester, you must fill out drop slips for each course in which you are enrolled. Drop slips are available from the Registrar's Office.

If you take a Leave of absence at the end of the semester, after you have finished your courses, it is not necessary to drop them.

International Students:
If you are not a citizen or a permanent resident of the United States, your visa may require that you be a full time student. If you take a Leave of Absence, you will no longer meet that requirement. You must obtain authorization for the Office of Intercultural Affairs before you take a Leave of Absence.

Length of Leave:
Normally students are allowed one initial leave and two leave extensions. After the initial leave, the student must submit a written request for each extension. If the student doesn't return or file the required request of extension, the student will be withdrawn from the University. Please note that you may not be on leave from Clark and be taking courses at another institution. If you plan to take courses elsewhere you must voluntarily withdraw from Clark. Should you wish to return, you must request to be readmitted.

Forwarding Mail:
You can make arrangements at Mail Services to have your mail forwarded to you. Only first class mail will be forwarded; campus mail, flyers, etc. will not be forwarded to you. Your mailbox at the Higgins University Center will not be reserved while you are on leave. When you return, a new mailbox will be assigned to you.

Your Clark e-mail will remain active while you are on your leave.

Campus Residence Halls/Houses:
When you take a leave, your housing reservation for the coming year is automatically canceled. A student who takes a leave of absence is released from the housing contract for the period of the leave. The one exception is that students who take a leave from the undergraduate college and enroll in COPACE are NOT released from their housing contract.

For insurance reasons, only currently enrolled students may live in campus housing. If you are no longer a currently enrolled student you must move out of your residence hall or house within 48 hours. You must check out with your RA or Area Coordinator. As a courtesy, students taking a leave are allowed a 48-hour grace period to move out. However, you must vacate your residence within 48 hours of your leave becoming effective. If you have any questions regarding moving out of your room please contact the Office of Residential Life and Housing at extension 7453.

Exit Inspection: If you live in a residence hall or house, notify you're RA (Resident Advisor) that you are leaving so that a final inspection of your room can be scheduled. If you do not make these arrangements, the room will be inspected in your absence and you will be billed for any damage. If your RA is not available, notify the Area Coordinator (AC).

Clark OneCard/Room Key: You must also turn in your room key and Clark OneCard to the Office of Residential Life and Housing. If you fail to turn these in, you will be charged for them.

Reservations for Return: If you wish to, or are required to, live in a residence hall or house on your return contact the Office of Residential Life and Housing to make arrangements.

Financial Assistance:
If you are receiving federal financial aid and are taking a leave of absence to attend another college, regulations state that you must withdraw from your current school, so as not to be dual-enrolled. A student who takes a Leave of Absence is not guaranteed the same financial aid package on returning to campus. If you leave during the semester and drop the courses you are taking, your eligibility for financial aid upon your return could be affected. To continue eligibility for financial assistance, a student must be making satisfactory academic progress. To meet this standard a student must have completed 5 units after the first year, 11 units after the second year and 18 units after the third year of attendance. If this is the case, you must fill out a Withdrawal form rather than a Leave of Absence form. Readmission is though the Dean of Students Office. Additionally, all students are only eligible for eight semesters of Clark financial assistance. If you take a Leave of Absence mid-year and will not return until the following year you must remember to re-apply for financial assistance since it is not automatically renewed each year. Also, we recommend that when planning a leave you see your financial aid counselor before you leave campus to review your financial aid status.

The procedures outlined here apply to tuition, room and board and mandatory fees.

Full refund: Full refund of tuition and mandatory fees is possible only when you are not officially "in attendance" at the University at the time of withdrawal. Once you are in attendance, your place at the University cannot be assigned to another; that place is used for the semester, even if you leave. The refund policy is based on this fact and its economic impact on the University.

Partial refund: Once you are officially in attendance at the University, only partial refunds are possible. The percentage of tuition and mandatory fees which is refundable decreases as the semester progresses, reaching zero at the midway point of the semester. Detailed information about refunds is available from your Student Account Counselor. Refunds are computed in accordance with federal regulations.

Title IV recipients: Refunds for first year students who are recipients of federal Title IV financial aid are calculated in accordance with federal regulations which may vary from the regular schedule described above. The Financial Assistance Office will calculate refunds for first year Title IV recipients.

Academic Probation/Disciplinary Status:
If you are on academic probation or under judicial sanction when you take a leave of absence, your status will not change while you are away. Your status will be the same when you return to campus; the "clock" stops running while you are on leave.

If, after you have arranged a Leave of Absence, the College Board places you on a Required Withdrawal, because of your academic performance in the previous semester, the Required Withdrawal status will replace your voluntary Leave of Absence status and will be so noted on your transcript.

Withdrawing from the University:
If while on leave you decide not to return to Clark at all, you should contact the Dean of Students Office which will provide you with the appropriate form for withdrawing from the University.