Leaves of absence or withdrawal from the College may have financial implications, depending on the date the action is taken. For information on all College fee refund policies, see the section on charges under Financial Information .
Work in progress for students who take a leave or withdraw during a semester will be treated as follows:
- The transcript of a student taking a leave or withdrawing from the College before the final date for dropping classes will not list courses for that semester. The transcript will record, however, a notation of the withdrawal.
- A student taking a leave or withdrawing from the College after the drop deadline may, when circumstances warrant, receive a W (withdrawal) notation for all courses for that semester; otherwise, F or NC grades will be recorded.
Leaves of Absence
Pomona College is committed to the academic and personal success of all students and recognizes the need of a student to interrupt their formal academic work for a period of time. Any student desiring to interrupt their formal academic program at Pomona for a period of time may take a leave of absence if the student follows the procedures outlined in this policy statement.
A student on a general or health leave of absence has the same rights of access to the campus as would any visitor. A student on leave may stay on campus for up to five consecutive nights each semester but not more than a total of seven nights per semester. The student on leave must have a current Pomona student as their host.
While on campus, the student may attend social events with the understanding that their host, as well as student on leave, will be held responsible for the conduct of the student on-leave/visitor. The student on leave must register with the Office of Housing & Residence Life and receive a guest pass, which entitles the on‐leave student to admission to Pomona events. Students on leave will not have swipe card access to College residential, academic or administrative buildings. Students on leave from the College should not be working at the College or auditing classes.
For study in the United States while on leave, students are strongly advised to apply in advance for approval of the program of study. Please note, transfer work will not be accepted for the 2020-21 academic year, due to covid-19. Refer to the Transfer Credit Policy for more information about transferring coursework.
For international students considering a leave of absence, please speak with the International Student Services office in advance to see how it will affect your immigration status and employment eligibility when you return. Contact ISS to discuss your plans at firstname.lastname@example.org or (909) 607-3719. Visit the ISS website for more information.
General Leaves of Absence
- Complete the Leave of Absence online form that includes a written statement of the reasons why the leave is requested, the duration of the leave, and the plans for the period of the leave. The form will ask you to indicate the type of leave:
- Set up an appointment with a dean from the Dean of Students office to discuss the leave request.
- Set up an appointment with your faculty advisor to discuss the leave request.
- Consult with the Student Accounts Office and the Financial Aid Office (as relevant) regarding any financial obligations, the deferral of loans, grants, or scholarships. A student planning a leave of absence is strongly encouraged to speak directly with the Financial Aid Office. It is essential that there be consultation in advance of the leave regarding deferring of grants or loans and application for aid upon return.
- The Dean of Students office will review and approve the request, and then notify the Registrar, Financial Aid Office, Student Accounts Office, the student’s faculty advisor, instructors (if applicable) and the Office of Housing & Residence Life.
A student who participates in the residence hall room draw in the spring semester but then subsequently applies for a general leave of absence from the College before the fall semester forfeits their entire ($500) fee deposit. Any student, on or off campus, who files a general leave of absence form after July 15 for the fall semester or December 15 for the spring semester forfeits the entire deposit. A student who has forfeited the fee deposit must again pay that deposit before they return to the College. The forfeiture of the fee deposit does not apply to students who take a health leave of absence or a student placed on an involuntary leave of absence.
General leaves of absence may be requested while classes are in session. Refunds of fees and disposition of courses in progress are arranged in compliance with college policy. If a general leave of absence is requested after the Drop date for classes, the student must submit a petition to the Academic Procedures Committee for a late “Withdrawal” from their classes.
Health Leaves of Absence
Pomona College students may apply for a voluntary leave of absence for health reasons. In supporting a student who wishes to take a voluntary leave of absence for health reasons, the College’s priorities are the well-being of the student, facilitating the student’s withdrawal from classes if it occurs mid-semester, and facilitating the student’s return to campus when the student is ready to resume academic work.
A Health Leave of Absence is recommended when a student’s health condition is judged to significantly impair a student’s ability to function safely or adequately as a student. The amount of time the student takes for a health leave of absence varies according to the situation. It is expected that the time away for the health leave of absence is used for treatment and recovery.
Students should complete the following steps to obtain a health leave of absence:
- Request an evaluation by a counseling or medical provider for the purpose of pursuing a health leave of absence.
- Complete the online Health Leave of Absence form.
- Set up an appointment with a dean from the Dean of Students office to discuss the leave request and review documentation.
- Consult with the financial aid office regarding any financial obligations, the deferral of loans, grants, or scholarships.
- As part of the process, the Dean of Students office will review and approve the request, and then notify the registrar, financial aid office, student accounts office, the student’s faculty advisor, instructors (if relevant) and the Office of Housing & Residence Life.
Following the Drop date for classes, only students who take health leaves are granted automatic “Withdrawals” from their classes; students pursuing other types of leaves need to complete the Academic Procedures Committee petition process to drop their classes late.
Extensions of Leaves
A leave of absence from the College may be requested for a total of up to four semesters (two academic years, requested semester by semester). The College does not generally grant personal leaves for longer than two academic years. Under extenuating circumstances, however, a student may address a letter of appeal to extend a leave beyond the two-year period to the Dean of Students who will present it to the Academic Procedures Committee.
Students who do not appeal successfully to have their leave extended will be withdrawn from the College after a two-year leave of absence. If the student later wishes to return to the College, an application for readmission must be presented to the Office of Admission.
Process for Return to the College from a General Leave of Absence
By June 1 for a fall semester return and December 10 for a spring semester return, provide necessary return documentation to the Dean of Students office at email@example.com.
Process for Returns to the College from a Health Leave of Absence
The College is deeply committed to supporting students who return from a Health Leave of Absence to ensure that the student is ready to return and function as a student and if needed, has the appropriate accommodations upon their return. The College encourages students on a health leave of absence to stay in contact with the College’s Director of Accessibility Resources and Services if they have any questions. As part of this process, the College requires that students who take a health leave of absence to complete the following steps prior to their return:
- By July 15 for a fall semester return and December 10 for a spring semester return, provide the necessary documentation to the Dean of Students office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The Dean of Students office will notify you as we receive documentation materials. Documentation is reviewed as it is received. We will notify you within 3-5 business days of the recommendation for your return from a health leave of absence.
- You must provide a release of information to allow the Director of Accessibility Resources and Services or a dean in the Dean of Students office to consult with other offices such as Students Health Services or Monsour Counseling and Psychological Services, as appropriate.
Once the documentation is reviewed, the student will have a discussion (in-person, by phone or other means) with a dean from the Dean of Students office to determine if the student is ready to return from a health leave of absence, and the kinds of accommodation the student may need in returning to campus.
The Dean of Students office will notify the student of the final decision. After the student is notified, the Registrar, Financial Aid, Student Accounts Office, Office of Residential Life/Campus Life, and faculty advisor are also notified.
In supporting students to return to campus after a health leave of absence, the College recognizes that a student may need accommodations. Students should contact the Director of Accessibility Resources and Services for additional information and to begin the registration process for any applicable accommodations such as the following:
- Reduced course load
- 9th semester or more at Pomona
- Academic and/or residential accommodations as appropriate
- Support to petition for retroactive withdrawals from previous courses
See Disabilities Accommodations website for more information.
A student may appeal a decision denying re‐enrollment to the Dean of Students by submitting a written request for review of the decision. The Dean of Students will review the student’s appeal and all necessary additional information and will then render a decision, which shall be final.
Withdrawal from the College
A student may withdraw voluntarily from the College by filing a Notice of Withdrawal in the Dean of Students Office. After review of this form, a copy of the notice will be returned to the student with a statement of the conditions under which readmission might be granted at a later date.
Readmission to the College: Students who withdraw from Pomona College before earning a degree may apply for readmission or reactivation. If the withdrawal occurred within the last five years the student is a candidate for reactivation and should direct their request to the committee or Pomona official who approved the withdrawal. Students who withdrew more than five years ago are considered candidates for readmission and must consult the Office of Admissions at email@example.com. Neither reactivation nor readmission to Pomona is guaranteed. Applications filed in absentia or applicants seeking irregular enrollment are considered by the Office of the Registrar and the Academic Procedures Committee
Five-Year Limit: If an application for readmission is made within five years of the last semester of enrollment, students may satisfy the rules, regulations and requirements in existence when they first enrolled in the College. A student who applies later than five years after the last semester of enrollment must follow the rules, regulations and requirements in effect at the time of reapplication. Previous credits earned at Pomona College will be evaluated by the registrar and academic departments.
For more information, please refer to the Pomona College Student Handbook.