The Nicholas School permits students to take up to two semesters of leave of absence for personal reasons upon completion of at least one semester of study.

Policy Overview

The full policy may be found in the Nicholas School Bulletin

  • Students taking a leave of absence will have their anticipated graduation date adjusted accordingly. 
  • Students considering a leave of absence are encouraged to consult with their coursework advisor to ensure they are aware of program requirements. Students should be able to meet all of their degree requirements but should be aware of any adjustments that may be required as a result of the leave of absence.
  • Students must be cognizant of the implications on their master’s project progress and plan accordingly.
  • Students must complete their degree within five years from the term of admission including any leaves of absence.

Students on F-1 Visa

If an F-1 visa student is not enrolled full-time, they are not permitted to remain in the U.S. and must leave the country. Students leaving the U.S. for the summer run the risk of not being able to return to the U.S. 

If an F-1 visa student leaves the U.S. they should be sure their visa will not expire while they are out of the U.S. as obtaining a renewal could be problematic. 

U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents

If the student is making use of the federal loan programs and is not enrolled at least half-time, the student will go into the grace period for loan repayment. Should the grace period be exhausted, the student will be obligated to start repaying their loans. Once the student returns to at least part-time enrollment, loan deferral may be requested, and the grace period may be reinstated.

Financial Aid

If a student takes more than two semesters of leave, their Nicholas School-supported merit-based aid will be canceled. 

Students with a Nicholas School need-based grant will have their need-based grant cancelled while on leave of absence. They must reapply for need-based aid consideration prior to the start of the term of return from leave. Need-based grants are not guaranteed. Students should contact the financial aid counselor about reapplying for need-based grant application procedures when they notify the NSOE registrar of their intent to return.




Policy owner
Student Services