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Can I take time off from school?
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If a student wishes to take a leave from their college, they are required to apply for a voluntary Leave of Absence (LOA), with an expected return date in a future semester. Health leaves of absence are coordinated by Cornell Health Services. The student will not be allowed to enroll in course work with the university while on a LOA (e.g., extramural studies, summer/winter session). While on a LOA, the student is not eligible for privileges afforded to full-time registered students, including housing, dining, library, student employment, and transportation services.

Colleges may place a student on leave of absence or withdraw a student who fails to meet the academic expectations of the college. Also, a college may withdraw a student who fails to return at the end of a period of authorized leave. Students may withdraw from the university at their own discretion.

Important information for financial aid applicants considering a leave or withdrawal:

Students attending Cornell University who are receiving federal Title IV financial aid (e.g., Federal Direct loan, PLUS loan, Pell Grant, or FSEOG) are required to return any portion of unearned federal aid if they withdraw, go on leave of absence, do not register, or otherwise fail to complete the period of enrollment for which the Title IV aid was provided. For federal aid purposes, a student is considered to have withdrawn from Cornell when a student ceases to be enrolled for any reason – required by the college, requested by the student, medical reasons, etc.  Institutional aid (Cornell Grant, endowed scholarships, and other institutional aid programs) may also be prorated upon taking a leave of absence or withdrawing.

If a student accepted student loans, they will need to complete an Exit Interview for each loan when they take a leave or withdraw from the university.


For more information regarding this, please refer to the Financial Aid website.

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