Emergency & Medical Leave

A student may request and be considered for an emergency or medical leave when extraordinary circumstances, such as a serious illness, injury, or hospitalization prevents the student from continuing classes. The severity and duration of the problem must be such that it would not be reasonable to expect the student to be able to make up the missed work. The Emergency & Medical Leave process covers both physical and mental health issues as well as military deployment. Please review Options for Students with Medical Issues below.

Emergency & Medical Leave Requests are “all or nothing”; it is not possible to receive an emergency leave from individual classes while remaining enrolled in other classes. A student may submit a late withdrawal request to the Office of the Registrar for withdrawal from single or multiple classes after the withdrawal deadline.

Family Medical Issues or Death in the Family

A student may also request emergency or medical leave when the health issues or death of a legal dependent prevent the student from continuing their classes. While the University recognizes that a family member's medical issues or death is traumatic, requests will only be considered when the family member is the student's legal dependent, unless extenuating circumstances exist. Students may be asked to provide documentation of legal dependency. Please contact us if you have questions.

Supporting Documentation

Requests for an Medical Leave must be made by the student to the Office of the Dean of Students and must be supported by a licensed health professional clearly indicating support for the medical leave. Requests for an Emergency Leave due to death in the family or military leave must include supporting documentation (i.e. death certificate, military deployment papers). Please review guidelines for Supporting Documentation below.

Deadline to Submit a Request

Students must submit a completed application for an Emergency & Medical Leave no later than the last day of the current semester in which the class(es) is/are scheduled. Incomplete or late applications will not be reviewed. Please see the Academic Calendar for deadlines.

University Refund Policy

Students are expected to drop their classes if an emergency occurs prior to the refund date for their courses. University refund policy (Academic Catalog) provides tuition credit when students drop on or before the published refund deadline. It is the responsibility of the student to drop courses by the official drop (refund) date in order to eliminate related tuition and fee charges. Credit hour minimums apply to financial aid rules, international student visa requirements and NAIA (Athletics) regulations. Students can withdraw from a course through their myGSU portal before the withdrawal deadline. Withdrawing from a course after the published refund date results in a “W” grade for the student, but charges for the course remain. In accordance with Policy 6 (see http://www.govst.edu/policies/) students can request a late withdrawal up until the last day of class, without credit, through the Office of the Registrar.

Tuition credits are not provided for course withdrawals with the exception of an approved Emergency Leave or University Error as determined through the Grievance Policy.

Grievance Policy

In the event a student was unable to drop courses by the 100 percent refund deadline due to a University Error, the student can file a grievance through the process outlined in Policy 5 (see http://www.govst.edu/policies/). To file a non-academic grievance, please see the Student Complaints and Grievances page. If the grievance is found to be meritorious, credit may be granted by the Dean of Students (for a non-academic grievance) or the College Dean (for an academic grievance) as a remedy for the University Error. 

Contact Information

If you have questions or would like to meet to discuss your options, please contact the Office of the Dean of Students to make an appointment at 708.235.7595 or via email at deanofstudents@govst.edu.

  • Options for Students with Medical Issues


    If you experience unforeseen medical problems or have dependents who are experiencing serious health problems and rely on you as a primary care giver, the University can work with you to determine an appropriate course of action.

    When considering what to do, you should think about the following questions:

    • At what point in the semester have the medical concerns arisen?
    • How well have you performed in the course up to the current time?
    • What assignments and exams have yet to be completed?
    • How long do you and your physicians believe your medical problems will persist?
    • Can treatment be obtained in such a manner that you can continue at the University?

    How you and your healthcare provider respond to these questions will shape the most appropriate course of action. Some possible solutions include:

    1. Establishing a completion plan with your faculty members in the event your medical concerns can be addressed within two or three weeks.
    2. Receiving an Incomplete for courses where the most of the graded work has been completed and your performance has been good. Faculty members must approve an incomplete.
    3. Withdrawing from a course(s) when there is still much work to be completed and your performance has been less than what you expected. Withdrawing from a course after the drop date will result in a ‘W’ on your transcript. Requests for Late Withdrawals can be filed with the Registrar's office.
    4. Medical Leave Request may be the best solution when medical concerns arise early in a semester, not much work has been completed in any of your courses, and treatment or recovery will take more than two or three weeks.

  • Submit a Emergency & Medical Leave Request


    Students are responsible for reading and understanding the Emergency Leave Guidelines before submitting an application. A complete application includes:

    1. Emergency Leave Request (via online form, see link below)
    2. Personal Statement of Emergency (via online form, see link below)
    3. Healthcare Provider Form or other supporting documentation (see examples below)
    4. Emergency Leave Request Signature Form (if applicable)

    Emergency Leave Request Signature Form

    If a student meets any of the following criteria, they must also submit the Emergency Leave Request Signature Form confirming they have consulted with the appropriate office regarding their request for an emergency leave

      • Financial Aid: If a student withdraws from all courses for the term, a Return of Title IV Calculation will be done to determine Financial Aid eligibility. This may result in a balance with the university. Additionally, while individual “W” grades (i.e. not complete term withdrawals) do not impact financial aid for the current term, they do impact a student’s completion ratio. This may impact financial aid eligibility going forward, due to Satisfactory Academic Progress.
      • International Students: Due to federal guidelines, international students must enroll full-time to maintain their visa eligibility. As such, students should consult with a representative from the Office of International Services before making any decisions that could impact their full-time enrollment status.
      • University Housing: To remain a resident in Prairie Place, students must be enrolled in a minimum of six credits (Fall & Spring semesters) or 3 credits in the summer session. Dropping below the minimum required credits can compromise your ability to live on campus.
      • Receiving Military Benefits: Students who are receiving military or veteran's benefits must contact the Veteran's Resource Center to discuss the impact of emergency leave.

      Completed form with signatures can be uploaded to the online application or submitted to the Office of the Dean of Students in C1310.

        Required Documentation

        Students should submit official documentation that confirms the emergency that occurred during the semester(s) for which they are requesting leave and supports their personal statement of emergency.

        • Students who are requesting medical leave must submit the Healthcare Provider Form and have their licensed healthcare professional (i.e., physician, psychologist, psychiatrist) complete the form.  
        • Official and/or notarized forms, documents or correspondence from a state agency, a governmental entity or reputable business, military deployment papers.
        • Death certificate, funeral program and/or obituary with the deceased name, date of death and funeral home contact information. Note: The deceased must be a dependent of the student to request Emergency Leave unless extenuating circumstances exist.

        All documentation is subject to verification by the Dean of Students office. Students who submit false documentation or misrepresented information will be referred for a violation of the Student Code of Conduct, and their request will be denied.

        Application Deadlines

        Students must submit a completed application for an Emergency & Medical Leave no later than the last day of the current semester in which the class(es) is/are scheduled. Incomplete or late applications will not be reviewed. Please see the Academic Calendar for deadlines.

        Submit an Emergency & Medical Leave Request

        To submit an emergency & medical leave request, please use the online form:submit request button

      • Dropping & Withdrawing from Courses


        What is the difference between dropping and withdrawing?

        The difference between dropping a course and withdrawing from a course is based on the time at which the student decides to stop participating in a class. If a student decides to stop participating in a course BEFORE the withdrawal deadline, it is defined as dropping a course. If a student decides to stop participating in a course AFTER the deadline, it is defined as withdrawing from a course.

        If a student drops a course, the course will not be included on their transcript and the student is entitled to a refund for that courese.

        If a student withdraws from a course, the course will be included on their transcript with a 'W.' This 'W' indicates to transcript reviewers that the student attempted the course but eventually withdrew prior to completing the course for a letter grade. 'W's do not count towards a student's GPA. Tuition charges remain for course withdrawals. Withdrawing from courses may have an impact on students Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid.

        Drop and Withdrawal dates for each class are located the the myGSU portal.

        Late Withdrawals: After the withdrawal date, withdrawing from courses requires the student to submit a request through the Office of the Registrar. Late Withdrawal requests require the support of the student's academic advisor and course instructor and is typically only approved with extenuating circumstances.

        Responsibility for Payment: Once you have registered for classes, you are responsible for all charges associated with the semester.  If you decide not to attend any or all of your courses, you must officially withdraw through myGSU. Students who are unable to withdraw through myGSU due to holds should contact the Registrar. It is the student’s obligation to drop/withdraw from their classes.  Students that withdraw and have received financial aid may have their aid returned to the appropriate agency.   


      • FAQs


        Is it guaranteed that my Emergency or Medical Leave will be approved?
        There is no guarantee that an Emergency or Medical Leave request will be approved. Requests are reviewed on a case by case basis and must be supported by documentation to be considered for approval.

        When will I receive a decision?
        Decision letters are sent via email to the GSU student email address approximately 7-10 business days after a complete application is received.

        How will my financial aid or account balance be impacted?
        Students requesting an Emergency or Medical Leave request should consult with Financial Aid to identify the impact of complete course withdrawals and/or eligibility to receive financial aid in subsequent semesters. Students who receive financial aid and withdraw from all courses may have a balance owed to the University.

        Will my application be kept confidential or private?
        The decision on requests is shared with the Registrar and Financial Aid and the instructors for processing purposes. The nature of the emergency will be disclosed as medical when it applies. The personal statement and documentation will not be shared outside of the Dean of Students office unless the student gives permission, or the student poses an immediate threat to themselves or others. This includes, but is not limited to, family, friends or university officials.

        Can I appeal the decision?
        Appeals should be submitted within 10 business days of the decision letter (the appeal deadline date is noted on the decision letter). The appeal should be a typed intent to appeal statement as well as any additional documentation that addresses the rationale for appealing the decision and any new information that was not presented in the initial application. This will be the only opportunity to present new information and/or documentation regarding the requested semester(s). If you wish to appeal this decision, you must submit a letter to the Office of the Provost. Submit your letter via email to vhunt@govst.edu by 10 working days from the date of this decision letter. For more information about the appeal procedure for Policy 5, please visit www.govst.edu/policies.