3.11 Leave of Absence/Withdrawal from the College

A student may request a leave of absence for a future semester or for a semester in progress. The Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students may grant a leave of absence for a duration of up to two consecutive semesters. A leave of absence may be extended beyond two consecutive semesters with the approval of the Assistant Vice President and Dean of Students. If the student does not apply for an extension, by email to studentaffairs@macalester.edu, prior to the end of the add/drop period associated with the anticipated return semester, the student will be considered permanently withdrawn from the College and must apply for readmission to the College to return.

In order to request a leave of absence, a student must have completed the first term as a new student and be in good academic standing. A student may not take a leave of absence if action of a committee, board or official of the College, which would affect the student's status, is pending. Students who leave the College and are ineligible for a leave of absence must apply for readmission. Questions about the leave of absence request should be addressed to the Office of Student Affairs at studentaffairs@macalester.edu.

International students are generally not allowed to take a leave of absence and remain in the U.S. during the semesters of the academic year according to VISA regulations. If an international student is considering taking a leave of absence, we strongly encourage the student to contact the International Student Programs Office for further clarification of their status and process for re-entry to the U.S., as well as for regulations and special exceptions for the leave of absence (temporary withdrawal).

Requesting a Leave of Absence

To request a leave of absence for a future semester, this form must be submitted to the Office of Student Affairs before the first day of class for the term in question.

To request a leave of absence for a semester in progress, this form must be submitted to the Office of Student Affairs.

-Students who request a leave of absence for a semester in progress may be required to remain on leave for the following semester.

-Students are typically not permitted to take a leave of absence for a semester in progress after the last day of class for the semester.

Any student who wishes to leave Macalester for the purpose of entering military service or fulfilling mandatory religious obligations shall be granted a leave of absence by the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.

Returning from a Leave of Absence

Prior to returning from leave of absence, the student will receive communication from the Registrar’s office with information regarding registration for classes for the anticipated semester they plan to return from their leave of absence. The Office of Student Affairs also sends communication as a reminder to the student, encouraging them to connect with the registrar’s office, residential life (if on-campus housing if desired) and financial aid (if applicable) regarding their return from leave of absence.

Students who do not return from a leave of absence by the anticipated return semester or approved extension will be permanently withdrawn from the College. Once permanently withdrawn from the college, a student must apply for readmission to the College to return.

Students who are on leave of absence may not:

  1. Participate in any student activity fee supported activity, intramurals, club or intercollegiate activities, forensics or performance activities, physical education activity courses, College sponsored volunteer activities or any activity in which they are representing the College.
  2. Use art, computing or science facilities.
  3. Use medical or counseling services at the Center for Health and Wellness.
  4. Live in College housing.
  5. Have a campus mailbox.
  6. Be employed in a student employment position.

Students on a leave of absence may use the Library, MAX Center, Career Development Center and faculty advising.

Email accounts for students on leave of absence will remain active.

Permanent Withdrawal from the College

Students who decide to permanently not return to the College (i.e. transfer to another institution) must submit this form to request a Permanent Withdrawal with the Office of Student Affairs. Once permanently withdrawn from the college, a student must apply for readmission to the College to return. Questions about permanently withdrawing should be addressed to the Office of Student Affairs at studentaffairs@macalester.edu.

Students who do not return from a leave of absence by the anticipated return semester or approved extension will be permanently withdrawn from the College. Once permanently withdrawn from the college, a student must apply for readmission to the College to return.

Readmission forms are available from the Registrar's Office. The college is not obliged to approve student readmissions.

Updated: August 2020