Note: The policies in this section are general PCOM policies pertaining to all students. Be sure to become familiar with your academic program’s handbook, which will provide you with additional policies and procedures specific to your academic program. The full Leave of Absence, Withdraw, Change in Status Policy (7.004) can be found on MyPCOM, Resources section.
There are five student status categories at PCOM:
2. Leave of Absence (LOA)
3. Withdrawal (WD)
A student is considered active if they are enrolled or have the ability to enroll in coursework. Students who are registered for audit coursework or who are in a non-degree program will only be considered enrolled at the institutional level and not for federal or state reporting purposes. There are 3 types of enrolled statuses: Less than half-time, half-time, and full-time. These are defined as:
Less than half-time= 2.99 credit hours or less
Half-time= 3 to 5.99 credit hours
Full-time= 6 credit hours or more
It is expected that students will be continuously enrolled (excluding summer for some programs). As a result, students who are in an “active status” will be moved to a “withdrawn status” after two consecutive terms of non-enrollment. Students should always seek a leave of absence if they believe they will not be able to complete their program of study as listed in the catalog.
Leave of Absence Status
A Leave of Absence indicates a temporary separation from the student’s academic program with the intention to return. There are two types of leaves of absence: College Mandated and Student Voluntary.
College Mandated Leave of Absence
The academic program can also require a student to take leave if the student does not meet academic standards. More information regarding this required leave can be found in the program handbooks.
The academic program/provost office will send an email notification to the student if they are required to take a mandatory leave. The student is not required to complete any paperwork for this leave.
Student Voluntary Leave of Absence
A voluntary Leave of Absence (LOA) indicates a student’s desire to temporarily separate from their academic program with the intention to return. A LOA is granted for a maximum of one year from the date the LOA is approved. The LOA may be granted for medical, military, jury duty, personal, or other reasons such as academic enrichment. Information on the implications and process of requesting a Student Voluntary LOA is provided in this section of the handbook. LOA implications that may be specific to an academic program are provided in the academic program handbook.
Implications of a Leave of Absence
The academic program will discuss with the student how taking a leave will impact the completion of their program of study. However, it should be assumed that any leave from the program will extend the time it takes the student to complete their degree program. This could result in the student being asked to retake additional previously passed coursework or new coursework added to the academic program of study. The student should reach out to their academic program for details.
A student who is on a leave of absence is considered withdrawn for financial aid purposes. Please be aware that a financial aid withdrawal status may affect the following:
- If the leave occurs during a term, it is possible that partial or full financial aid will be returned resulting in a balance owed to the institution. See the Title IV return of funds policy for more information: https://www.pcom.edu/about/departments/financial-aid/return-of-funds.html
- If the leave occurs during a term, it is possible that a partial or full tuition refund will be issued to the student. See PCOM’s tuition refund policy for more information: https://www.pcom.edu/about/departments/bursar/refund-policy.html
- Depending on the length of the leave, it is possible for the student to be required to start repayment on their previously borrowed student loans. The student will not be charged tuition or receive financial aid disbursements during their leave.
- For more information about LOA and its impact on financial aid, please visit https://courseleaf.pcom.edu/the-college/fin-aid/
Registration and Grades
Students on a leave are considered withdrawn and are reported as such to various federal and third party agencies such as the National Student Loan Database System and the National Student Clearinghouse. Once the student returns to the program and is registered for coursework those same agencies will be notified of the updated enrollment status.
Those students requesting a leave during a term will receive a grade for their coursework. At minimum the student will receive a W (withdrawal), WF (withdrawal failing), WP (withdrawal passing), or a number/letter grade depending on their program’s specific policies as listed in their programmatic handbook. If awarded a W/WF/WP grade, that grade will show on the academic transcript but will not impact the student’s grade point average. Students should review their program’s handbook for more specific information.
While on a LOA, the student will retain access to their PCOM email, library, student affairs, and mental health and counseling services https://www.pcom.edu/student-life/student-affairs/counseling/
How to Request a Student Voluntary Leave of Absence (LOA)
Please refer to the Registrar’s website at https://www.pcom.edu/about/departments/registrar/leave.html for instructions on how to request a Leave of Absence.
If the decision is made to take a Leave of Absence, the student must complete the PCOM Leave of Absence Form, which includes receiving the appropriate programmatic and administrative approvals with the final approval from the Dean. The LOA is not approved without the Dean’s final approval. The online form to request the leave is available at the link above. The effective date of the LOA is discussed and determined during the process.
Upon approval of the Leave of Absence form, the Office of the Registrar will send the student a final email confirming the leave is approved as well as a similar notice is sent out to the administration and the academic program.
A student who does not re-enroll in coursework at the end of their approved leave of absence will be subjected to Academic Policy 7.004- “Leave of absence, withdrawal, and change of status” which requires a student to be enrolled or be on an approved leave of absence. After two consecutive terms of non-enrollment or not being on an approved leave, the student will be administratively withdrawn from their program.
Returning from a Leave of Absence (LOA)
A student who is on a leave of absence will be allowed to return to PCOM at the end of the LOA and will not be required to apply for readmission to their program. If a student is not prepared to return after the year, they must contact their program director to request an extension. Please note the Dean of their school must approve the requested extension beyond a year and such extensions are usually only made for extreme events that are out of the control of the student.
The student must email the Senior Program Manager in the Provost’s Office stating their intention to return, no later than one month prior to their intended date of return. PCOM may require professional documentation of fitness to return from a leave of absence.
The withdrawal status represents a separation from the degree program with no intention to return. A student who is withdrawn from their program will be required to be readmitted into the program and could be required to complete all previously taken coursework. There are two types of withdrawal status: Administrative and Student Voluntary.
Administrative withdrawal is also processed when a student has stopped attending their academic program for two or more academic terms without being on an approved leave of absence. Both the student and the Program Director will be notified prior to the administrative withdrawal process and the student will have two weeks from the date of the withdrawal notification to speak with their program director about re-enrolling into the program or requesting a leave of absence.
Student Voluntary withdrawal is a request from the student to withdraw from their academic program. To do so, the student would need to complete the withdraw form at https://app.smartsheet.com/b/form/61f2e5e509f246a0b93890b71b62e78d, Once the form is submitted, it will be sent to student affairs as well as the student’s program director who might reach out to the student to discuss their request. It should be noted that the option of leave of absence should always be considered before withdrawing from the program as the withdrawal results in the student needing to reapply through the admission process and likely having to repeat some or all of the coursework for the program.
Dismissal represents permanent separation from the College. A student who is dismissed from their academic program must wait one year before re-applying to the same academic program. There are two types of dismissals:
Academic Dismissal is a separation from the College based upon the student’s failure to fulfill the academic requirements of their program. Information on this process is provided in the Academic Standing section of this handbook, and online.
Disciplinary Dismissal is a separation from the College based upon the student’s violation of a standard of conduct policy and recommended to the Provost by the Student Professional Conduct Committee. Information on the disciplinary process is provided in the Violation of College Policies and Disciplinary Processes section of this handbook, and online.
The graduated status represents a student who has met all degree requirements as listed in their program of study and their degree has been conferred.
Verification of Enrollment/Good Standing
All requests by students or graduates for verification of their enrollment, academic standing or graduation must be made in writing to the Office of the Registrar. The enrollment verification form can be obtained from the Registrar’s website at pcom.edu/about/departments/registrar/. Requests are typically processed within five business days of receipt.
If the verification letter must be mailed with additional third-party forms or any other supporting documentation, those materials should be included with the enrollment verification request. If an account or reference number is required, this must be stated on the request.
College's Right to Separate Students
The College reserves the right, and the student, by the act of matriculation, concedes to the College the right, to separate a student from the College at any time deemed necessary to safeguard PCOM standards of scholarship, safety, conduct and compliance with regulations, or for such other reasons deemed appropriate by the College. For more information, please visit the College’s Right to Separate Students section in the handbook.