7 Steps to Take If You Need a Semester Off

For some students, the necessity to leave college for semester appears to be the end of the world. There are always doubts if you should take time off: you might think you’ll be too behind to go on with the curriculum, and that you might not return. But there are plenty of reasons why students decide to take some time off during the academic year, and it’s completely doable in case you follow the right steps to be out and back to school as seamless and easy as possible. A decision to take a semester off is kind of big, and it always requires much thinking and planning.

1. Address to a school official

If you have a plan to come back to the university where you are currently studying, it’s of high importance that you talk to the official representative at your school to find out about the process of being absent. Your academic adviser is a good place, to begin with, they’ll point you in the right direction and help you figure out next steps. Many colleges have a student dean or even a dean for a certain class year who is able to help you with the exact circumstances. Talk to college officials in order to discover the proper steps that you have to take to make the leave painless.

2. Talk to the financial aid office

We all know, college is an expensive institute, and you have to be very attentive and careful about taking the leave of absence and know how it is going to influence your loans and scholarships. Your financial aid might be connected to a contingency that you finish your semesters one by one consequently. Talk to the members of the office of financial assistance to figure out what the process is like and what is needed to transfer scholarships, loans and any other financial aid you are getting.

Also Read: 5 Advantages Of Online Learning for Students

3. Have a plan in your mind

A lot of people are going to ask questions about your decision to take a semester off. It may be your school friends, family members or professors. They are all people who care about you and therefore, they will worry that you might get off the track, and in most cases will question your decision. Having a particular plan in mind, even if it’s just for a couple of weeks, will calm down some naysayers and most likely give you the peace you need.

Have a plan in your mind what you are about to do for the next six months of your life but do not pan out everything meticulously to the very detail. Yes, it’s essential to plan how you are going to spend time away from the university. But planning every second is not realistic and will probably leave you drained and anxious.

4. Make your mind if you want to go back to current school or transfer to a new one

Normally, when students transfer schools, they decide to go from one semester straight to the next one at a new school. But doing a transfer while taking a semester off is a different thing, and it may be helpful for you to get through a transfer process without losing your mind.

“I had to take the second semester of my first year off for a number of reasons. The anxiety over the course of the year started to feel overwhelming which caused a great deal of distraction, and then I realized that the university was not meeting my career goals and expectations,” says Ray. “I made up my mind that instead of spending much money on a semester at college I was not excited about, I would go for a Leave of Absence and explore my interests and focus on my health.” While taking a semester off you can figure out the transfer process and have the pressure off yourself, and you don’t need to fill in the applications and keep up with studies.

5. If you have time, get a job

Obviously, if you are taking a semester off because of health issues, getting a job is not an option. All in all, you are not expected to work all the time you are away from school (you’re taking a semester off for a reason). But if you are leaving college for a transfer reason, it is great to pick up the part-time job and save up some money. Having a job even if it is just a couple of shifts a week will give you a reason to leave the house and make you feel like you are accomplishing something in the meantime. A part-time job may be a source for paying for your next semester or a source for little pocket money. Still good, right?

6. Work out your return plan

After being far away from school for a whole semester, planning your return seems to be a daunting and endless task. You’ll have to do everything which you would normally be doing if you were at uni campus – home assignments, preparation for tests, planning housing and class schedule – on top of the actions needed to get re-enrolled. Every school has its unique processes and regulations, so figure them out as soon as you can. If you need help with written home assignments, address to the sites like WritePro.net. Drop a note: “Write my essay,” and they will contact you back in an instant.

Working out a return plan requires your readiness to return to college. If you are taking a semester off because of your health, you want to make sure that you have taken enough time to recover, and that you are ready to place yourself back into the academic setting.

7. Travel while you are off college

Once you plan to take your time off, you’re most likely to head back to the area where you have grown up, and the same things that you dealt with in the past. Therefore, in order to not fall into the usual stagnant mode, try to travel to other areas during a break. It can be a life-changing big trip to another continent or just an out-of-state visit to some relatives. The trip will definitely keep your excitement level high and broaden your horizons.

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