Leaves and Absences

If you decide to go on leave, we’ve got you covered.

Excused Absences

Occasionally, students may miss classes for a short or long period of time. The Student Excused Absence Policy helps explain resources and support for students who miss classes.

Leaves of Absence

Students enrolled at Clark University are expected to maintain continuous enrollment, with the exception of the summer break. However, we understand that it sometimes may be necessary or desirable to take a leave of absence for a period of time. Students who are thinking of taking a leave of absence should contact the Division of Student Success, by phone at 1-508-793-7423 or via email at success@clarku.edu.

A leave of absence is granted for one semester at a time. Students may take a leave of absence for three consecutive semesters, but must contact the Student Success to extend their leave each semester. If the student has not returned to Clark University after three consecutive semesters, they will be withdrawn administratively from Clark. A student who is granted a voluntary leave while on academic and/or disciplinary status will return to that same status. Consult your academic advisor as well as other offices directly, including Financial Assistance and Student Accounts, to discuss implications of taking a leave of absence.

International Student Leave of Absence

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 from the International Students and Scholars Office at isso@clarku.edu before you take a leave of absence.

Leave for Study Abroad

Leaves for the purpose of studying abroad or away are arranged through the Office of Study Abroad and Study Away Programs.

Medical Leave of Absence

If a medical condition has precipitated your need for a leave of absence, you may apply to take a medical leave of absence. To do so, read the Medical Leave of Absence Policy and then schedule a meeting with the Division of Student Success.

Voluntary Leave of Absence

The University recognizes that, for various reasons, students may want to interrupt their enrollment at Clark to take some time off and may request a temporary separation from the University. To request a voluntary leave of absence, contact the Division of Student Success. You will also be asked to complete a request for a leave of absence after your meeting.

Returning from a Leave of Absence

To return from a leave of absence, contact the Division of Student Success at success@clarku.edu or call 1-508-793-7423. It is not necessary to reapply for admission to return to active status from leave status, but you must inform Student Success in writing of your plan to re-enroll.

In the semester during which you are on leave, Student Success will send an email to your Clark email address asking you to indicate whether you plan to return, request an extension of your leave, or notify us that you are withdrawing. Responding to this email serves as the required written notification of your intent to return to active status or to extend your leave. Responding to the email will ensure that you get the appropriate information to facilitate your enrollment. Failure to respond results in being withdrawn from the University.

Students returning from a medical leave of absence also will need to complete the following forms:

Advance Registration

When you take a leave of absence, your course selection for the coming semester is automatically canceled. After you notify us that you are returning, reach out to your faculty advisor to discuss class registration. If you are unable to contact your faculty advisor, contact Academic Advising at 1-508-793-7468 or advising@clarku.edu.

Withdrawing from the University

If while on leave you decide not to return to Clark, contact the Division of Student Success. We will provide you with the appropriate instructions for withdrawing from the University.

We are here for you.

Division of
Student Success

2nd Floor
Shaich Family Alumni and Student Engagement Center



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