There are many reasons why a student might want or need to take time away from MIT. These may include personal or medical issues interfering with their academics; opportunities for professional experience, such as an internship; family or community commitments; or the desire to just take a break.
There are 3 types of leave a student can elect to take:
If a student wishes to take planned time away from MIT, they may consider taking a Leave of Absence (LOA). Under the terms of a LOA, a student can request to take between one and four semesters away from MIT.
A Personal Leave is typically sought when a student needs to attend to personal or family issues that arise unexpectedly during the semester. Under the terms of a Personal Leave, a student usually takes at least one full semester away from MIT and cannot register again until they have been approved to return.
A Medical Leave is usually prompted when a student and their treaters feel that their mental or physical health is preventing them from participating in campus life, including academics. Under the terms of a Medical Leave, a student must take at least one full semester away from MIT, and complete the prescribed course of medical and/or mental health treatment before requesting return. A student cannot register again at MIT until they have been approved to return
Click here to read the Medical Leave and Return Policy (updated February 2018)
We are here to help guide you through the process of taking time away and returning. Simply not registering, or dropping all subjects during a semester, are not the proper ways to take a leave. S3 deans meet with students to talk through their specific situations and to come up with a good plan. You should leave the office feeling like you have worked together to create a clear understanding of the expectations during your leave.
Please contact S3 to set up an appointment to discuss your leave.
If you are a student who is planning on taking a leave, or already on a leave, please visit the Resources page for anything you might want to know while on leave. If you are someone who knows a student on leave, please visit this page to learn about how to support students on leave.