Frequently Asked Questions
for Notification of Leave & Deferment
What are the benefits of submitting a notification of leave or deferment?
Most scholarships awarded by the USU Office of Admission (that have been accepted) can be placed on hold and re-activated upon return (for scholarships awarded by departments, Statewide Campuses, or off-campus entities, students must contact the donor directly to request that their scholarship be placed on hold. In some cases with private scholarships, if a donor can't hold a scholarship, the scholarship office may be able to hold it until your return. Contact the scholarship office in this case at firstname.lastname@example.org, prior to your departure).
Only pertinent and timely communication from USU will be sent while you are gone. Your notification ensures that we are not sending you unnecessary information.
What's the difference between a "notification of leave" and "Deferment"?
Notification of Leave
For current students who have attended USU a minimum of three weeks or more and plan to take time off from school, drop courses if applicable, and return in a future semester.
For students who have received confirmation of USU admission but plan to postpone or defer their beginning semester to a future date without attending another instition in the meantime.
What are some common reasons students need to defer or take a notification of leave?
- Religious or humanitarian service missions
- Financial and employment related issues
- Military service
- Family responsibilities
- Medical and/or health issues
For how long can I defer or be on leave?
Notification of Leave
The maximum amount of leave allowed is three years for all. After that, students must reapply for admission.
Deferments are generally granted for a total of 1 1/2 years (excluding summer semester). However, allowances will be made for those participating in official assignments such as military, church, or humanitarian service. If requesting a deferment for more than 1 1/2 years, the student must submit an official letter of assignment and/or other documentation. All deferment requests must be approved by an admissions officer who can be reached at email@example.com.
What do I need to do to prepare for my leave?
If you have not attended USU before, you will need to complete New Student Orientation after you return. You will pay your orientation fee only after you return as well. Please look at the leaving and returning checklists.
We recommend that you meet with your academic advisor before leaving to obtain a list of recommended courses to take upon return. A list of advisors by major, and their contact information may be found at USU Advising.
Double check your academic standing, to ensure that you have no holds, restrictions, or fees that would prohibit you from returning.
Assign a Delegate
Ideally, you should identify a parent or guardian as a delegate at myid.usu.edu. This process authorizes university officials to share information about your record with your delegate. Please note that without this delegation, by federal privacy laws (FERPA), we cannot share anything other than "directory information" (name, address, major, class rank). HOWEVER, if you are claimed as a dependent on your parents federal income taxes, then your parents may file a Parent Declaration of Student Dependency delegation form, which would grant them access to your information. Please see this FERPA information page for more details.
Keep on File
If you have assigned a delegate for yourself while away, gather the following information for your delegate and have them keep it where it can be easily accessed:
- A-number (Student ID Number)
- Secure password
- Access to your USU or recovery email (for password recovery)
- Notification of Leave contact information: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Advisor's name, phone number, and email address
- Advisor's checklist (List of classes suggested that you should take upon return)
- Information regarding your desired housing including application and payment deadlines
Keep in mind that registration for summer semester is in early April, fall semester is in May, and spring semester is in mid-November (approximately).
*Please note well: As a delegate, you may not do things like inspect your student’s rooms, or answer for your student in processes, or withdraw a student without your student’s consent. Being a delegate does not mean that you have the equivalent rights and responsibilities as your student.
How/can I extend my deferral or leave?
Submit a new deferral request and follow the deferral instructions if you have questions. These requests will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. In the free text reasoning box within the deferral request process, please state why you are wanting to extend your deferment.
Notification of Leave
Submit a new Notification of Leave indicating your new return semester.
How/can I shorten my deferral?
Email email@example.com stating that you are wanting to shorten your deferment. Please include your A-number and which semester you would like to come back.
Notification of Leave
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and let them know when you plan to return. Please include your A-number. You can register for classes as normal for whichever semester you return (assuming it is within three years and you don't have any holds or restrictions on your account).
Can I attend another university or college after I have deferred my admissions to USU?
No. Students who attend another university or college while on deferment will need to reapply upon return.
Can I attend another university or college after I submit a notification of leave from USU?
Yes. Students who have attended USU a semester or more who have notified USU about their up to three-year leave may attend another college or university. Please note well: All USU students who decide to attend another college or university should check their scholarship agreements with email@example.com and financial aid with firstname.lastname@example.org.
How will it affect my scholarship and/or financial aid?
You do not defer financial aid but rather complete the application process when you will begin attending USU. The application for financial aid begins in January for the following academic year, and must be applied for each year.
If you are a recipient of federal financial aid and then you take a notification of leave during the semester, you have to repay what you received, according to the repayment of federal funds policy outlined on the financial aid website. If you start your leave of absence after the term, then you are not subject to the policy.
Note: If you are taking a notification of leave during a semester you received financial aid, you may be at risk of financial aid warning or suspension. So be sure to double check with federal financial aid first!
USU Admissions Scholarships: If you are deferring your Utah State University Admissions scholarship, it needs to be accepted by the acceptance deadline printed on the scholarship award letter. Only officially accepted awards will be held. In 3-4 weeks you will receive confirmation of your request, OR you will be notified why it cannot be held, from the USU Scholarship Office.
Off-Campus Scholarships: You will need to contact the awarding company directly.
USU College or Department Scholarships: You will need to contact the awarding USU college or department directly.
What if I'm transferring, do I still need to complete this form?
Yes. By completing the form you will be notifying USU that you have transferred and then we can adjust our communication with you accordingly.
What if I am a Graduate student?
A graduate leave of absence, during which neither continuous registration or a $100 payment is required, may be granted under the following conditions:
- Illness, required military service, or other extenuating circumstances acceptable to the department head and the graduate dean.
- Lack of availability of courses in a planned Statewide Campuses program.
- Participation in a planned program based primarily on summer semester courses.
- For either 2 or 3, the student must have an approved Program of Study on file in the School of Graduate Studies before a leave will be granted.
A leave of absence must be approved by the graduate dean, upon written recommendation of the department head. A leave of absence may be the basis for extending the time limit to complete a degree, but not to extend the time limit for course validity.
What if I am an International Student?
What if I am in the U.S. Armed Forces?
USU is committed to providing the highest quality of service to service members who were unable to attend school due to military service. USU adheres to the provisions for U.S. Armed Forces members provided in Chapter 3 of Volume 2 of the Federal Student Aid Handbook. Please feel free to reach out to our Veterans Resource Office for any additional questions.
What if I am Student of Care/Concern?
Please check with the USU Office of Student Concern to go over all policies that may be informative to your situation.
Please note well: Most USU admitted students are eligible to take a Notification of leave (or file a Notice of Leave, or to take time off without having to reapply, etc), except: students who are transferring to another institution; students who have been academically suspended or expelled; students who have disciplinary suspension or expulsion, or with a disciplinary hold; students with a University-initiated Leave; etc.)