Leaves of Absence

Taking a Leave of Absence

Leaves of absence can be granted for personal or medical reasons. You must file a “Leave of Absence/Withdrawal” form with the Graduate School Office in Caldwell Hall. A leave of absence can run for up to 12 months and may be renewed up to three times. After four years, you must reapply for admission to the Graduate School.

Access to Campus, Housing, and Financial Aid

If you take a personal leave, you lose access to campus facilities and personnel, and there is no guarantee your financial aid will be continued. In most cases, this means students may no longer have access to labs, libraries, and online resources that require a NetID. Students on medical leave also cannot remain in student housing.

International Student Considerations

If you are not an American citizen and hold a nonimmigrant visa, you must talk to a representative in the International Students and Scholars Office. Before leaving Cornell, international students should contact the Graduate Student Services Office and the International Students and Scholars Office for information on maintaining visa eligibility for reentry. For U.S. citizens with educational loans, the repayment grace period starts the date the loans become active.