The Office of Student Life can assist students with…
- hardship withdrawals
- leaves-of-absence for non-medical emergencies
- advice on university policies, procedures, and grievances
- support while experiencing a crisis
- information on university resources
Because of our temporary location due to the construction of the new Multicultural Center, we encourage calling or emailing.
Common situations the Office of Student Life can help with include: academic grievances, frustrations with the administrative workings of the institution, emergency leaves-of-absence, and hardship withdrawals due to personal illness, injury, or the death or illness of a family member.
Hardship Withdrawals (full or partial)
A student who is unable to complete a course due to hardship may petition for a late course withdrawal after the stated deadline. Hardship is considered to be an incapacitating injury or illness requiring extensive recuperation or a significant personal emergency such as the death of an immediate family member. Verification of the hardship is required. Petitions for a late course withdrawal due to hardship are available below or from the Office of Student Life – petitions for partial hardship withdrawals must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. on Friday of the eighth week of classes; petitions for a full hardship withdrawal must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. on the Friday prior to finals week. Petitions will not be granted if all of the work has been completed for the course(s), or if a grade has already been assigned for the course(s). A grade of ‘W’ is awarded to the class(es) in which the student received a hardship withdrawal; a ‘W’ is not included in GPA calculations.
Petition for Hardship Withdrawal
Click here for general Withdrawal Procedures in the WWU General Catalog.
Leaves of Absence
As a matter of university policy, students are expected to attend classes as scheduled. However, subject to acceptable documentation, a Non-Medical Leave of Absence may be granted through the Office of Student Life.
A non-medical leave of absence may be granted for up to five days during an academic quarter or summer session. Typically, leave is not granted for one day, unless the absence would adversely impact the student’s grade (e.g., a missed test or quiz). Unless circumstances make prior request impossible, students are expected to request leave prior to an absence.
When it is impractical for a student to make-up missed work or assignments, they should discuss the matter with their instructor.
If a student is unable to attend classes because of an injury or illness, a Medical Leave of Absence may be requested through the Student Health Center. A medical leave of absence will not be granted without proper diagnosis and/or documentation. For further details, see here or please contact the Student Health Center, Campus Services Building 202, at (360) 650-7352.
Non-medical leave of absence can be provided in the following situations: Funeral, memorial, celebration of life; serious illness of a family member; death of a family member or close friend; court appearance (criminal, civil, protection order, immigration related); crime victimization including violence or sexual violence (working with CASAS or Equal Opportunity Office or police); verified Western sponsored trips (clubs, academic organizations, conferences); house/apartment fire; religious holidays; jury duty.
Non-medical leave of absences are not provided in the following situations: family vacations, graduations, weddings, baby showers; interviews; car problems; childcare issues; roommate conflicts; academic stress/overload; student-athlete participation in sports or club sports; weather-related absences (see Western’s Inclement Weather Policy); medical (see Student Health Center’s Medical Excuse Policy).
Students have protection, through orderly procedures, against arbitrary or capricious actions or decisions by their instructors; students also have protection against erroneous actions or decisions by academic units. At the same time, students are responsible for achieving and maintaining the standards of academic performance and excellence which are established by their instructors and for complying with all relevant policies, standards, rules and requirements which are formulated by the University and the University’s academic units. Office of Student Life staff can assist in explaining and answering questions about the academic grievance policy and process found in the University Catalog.