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Withdrawal from the Penn State University is a serious action. The University has the responsibility to advise the student of the implications of the withdrawal action. However, it is the responsibility of the student who withdraws from enrollment in courses at the Penn State University to make the final decision and to understand the implication of their withdrawal action.

To initiate a withdrawal, the student must sign an Official Withdrawal form and follow submission instructions on the form. The Official Withdrawal form can be obtained online at http://www.registrar.psu.edu/student_forms/withdrawal_form.cfm

The effective date of the withdrawal action will be the date the form is received by the Office of the University Registrar Office. The Fee Assessor will determine the amount of refund due the student. The Bursar's office home page gives details on refunds of tuition and charges.

Students who live in a residence hall must check out of the hall within 24 hours after processing the withdrawal action.

This withdrawal action drops all courses (current semester and future semesters) offered through resident instruction, continuing education, and World Campus.

The deadline for withdrawing is 5:00 p.m. on the last day of classes for a given semester.

A "W" symbol will appear in the grade column on a student's transcript for all courses still in session on the effective date of withdrawal. Courses that ended before the effective date of the withdrawal will follow normal grade-reporting conventions. All courses that have not yet started as of the effective date of the withdrawal will be deleted and no entry will appear on the student's transcript.

The withdrawal date will appear on the student transcript after the course list of the semester of the withdrawal.

Degree students who withdraw from the University must apply for re-enrollment if they wish to return to degree status (see Senate Policy 58-00).

Medical Withdrawal:

In the event that a student may be unable to complete a schedule of classes due to illness, a withdrawal for medical reasons should be accomplished. Student medical withdrawals are authorized under one of two actions.

  1. University physicians can initiate withdrawal actions by recommending to the college dean/campus executive officer that the student be withdrawn. The University physician sends a memo to the student college dean/campus executive officer authorizing medical withdrawal.
  2. Students who require a medical withdrawal and are unable to consult with a University physician may contact their college dean/campus executive officer and request a medical withdrawal. The college dean/campus executive officer may initiate the request for a medical withdrawal on behalf of a student. Consultation and authorization from a University physician may be solicited.

Students capable of signing the Official Withdrawal form are expected to do so. If the student is not capable of signing the Official Withdrawal form, the college dean/campus executive officer may sign on behalf of the student.

University physicians have the option of placing registration holds on students withdrawing for medical reasons. This hold will require that the student consult with University physicians before a re-enrollment request will be approved.

Summer Only Withdrawal:

There are two special conditions associated with a "summer only withdrawal" These conditions are:

  1. Because summer is not a required period of enrollment, students withdrawing during the summer continue to be eligible for enrollment during the following fall semester. (Re-enrollment is not required.)
  2. Summer only withdrawal is not available to newly admitted undergraduate students during their summer of admission. New summer admits must process a regular withdrawal for summer and re-enroll for the fall semester.

Military Duty Withdrawal:

Military withdrawal is available only:

1. To students who

  1. Are active-duty service members or activated reserve-component members of the U.S. armed services (not a contractor or civilian working for the military), and/or are spouses or same-sex domestic partners of active-duty members or activated reserve-component members and
  2. Are ordered to relocate, and, as a result, are unable to meet class attendance and other participation requirements, including web-based activities.

Students and/or spouses or same-sex domestic partners should contact the Registrar's Office and present a copy of the military orders with formal correspondence on unit letterhead signed by the commander requesting military withdrawal from Penn State due to orders. The formal correspondence must include the following:

  1. Unit commander contact information, and
  2. Verification of duration and location of pending assignment.

If the student is a spouse or same-sex domestic partner of an active-duty member or activated reserve-component member, then proof of current dependency must accompany the formal correspondence.

An Official Withdrawal form will be signed by the student. The reason cited on the form will be "Military."

If timing does not permit an initial presentation of the military orders, the student may later initiate the withdrawal by providing a formal request in writing, personally signed, and sent to the University Registrar, 114 Shields Building, University Park, PA 16802; or by FAX to 814-863-1929. A copy of the military orders and formal correspondence as described above must also be provided.

The University Registrar will initiate the withdrawal action on behalf of the student. In addition to the various offices normally notified by the withdrawal action, the Fee Assessor will be specifically notified. When approved, the notation "military withdrawal" will be provided on the transcript.

The Office of Student Aid will review eligibility for aid funds already received by the student. Students will be evaluated and advised on the status of their financial aid based on the date of their withdrawal. Students will also be advised of actions required to defer loan(s) repayments based on active military duty.

Students with a "military withdrawal" will not be charged tuition for the semester of withdrawal. They will be charged a housing assessment to cover expenses already incurred. Unused meal plan points will be refunded. No refunds can be made until the University has received a copy of the military orders and formal correspondence as described above.

The student's Penn State access account remains active and the monthly fee is waived for the duration of the pending assignment.

At the time the student is discharged from military service or is placed on inactive duty, the student and/or spouse or same-sex domestic partner are eligible for "military re-enrollment" to the University, assuring the student and/or spouse or same-sex domestic partner direct access to the same major and location as was assigned at the time of withdrawal. These students are eligible to advance register for courses at the time of re-enrollment to the University. The re-enrollment fee is waived for "military re-enrollment."

For information on a military short-term absence, please reference policy E-11.

During their military absence, students should direct any questions regarding their status or procedures for re-entry to Penn State to the Veterans Program Office.

Senate Policy:  56-30, Withdrawal

Approved: ACUI (4-29-76)
Revised: ACUI (4-13-78)
Revised: ACUI (4-8-82)
Revised ACUI (1-17-85
Revised: ACUI (3-25-85)
Revised: ACAS (5-8-87)
Revised: ACUE (4-3-97)
Revised: Editorial (9-29-00)
Revised: Editorial (11-1-07)
Revised: Administrative (5-25-11)
Revised: ACUE (5-2-13)
Revised: ACUE (1-9-14)
Revised: ACUE (6-6-19)
Approved: ACUE (7-21-20)