Medical Leaves of Absence Demystified: Blog

We at Student Support Services acknowledge the uniqueness of every student’s circumstances.  We offer a place for you to think through your options, of which a medical leave is one, in order to develop a plan that best works for you towards successful completion of your Brown degree.  Students who opt for a medical leave do so for many different and varied reasons involving any combination of physical health, mental health and/or substance abuse conditions that interfere with their success at Brown in one way or another. While the decision to take a leave can often be difficult, Brown students often share that in retrospect taking a medical leave was the right choice for them. To learn more about students' experiences related to leave, visit the Medical Leaves of Absence Demystified blog by clicking on the button at the top of this page. 

A medical leave is intended to provide the freedom to fully attend to one’s health and well-being while away from the rigors of Brown. We have guidelines in place to help students get the help that they need while away to achieve the level of sustained stability needed to support a successful return.  The clearance process provides for attention to each individual’s circumstances and involves helping a student connect to appropriate resources upon return so as to support continued stability while at Brown.

This section of our site contains information on all aspects of the medical leave option and deans are always happy to meet with students to discuss their questions regarding medical leaves.

Number of Medical Leaves of Absence and Students Cleared to Return Per Academic Semester
Academic Semester Fall 2014 Spring 2015 Fall 2015 Spring 2016 Fall 2016 Spring 2017 Fall 2017 Spring 2018 Fall 2018 Spring 2019 Fall 2019 Spring 2020
Medical Leaves of Absence Taken 46 54 52 33 52 34 44 48 40 51 46 37
Number of Students who Applied for Clearance to Return 78 41 69 35 29 28 19 56 33 38 31 32
Number of Students Cleared to Return* 60 37 60 33 28 28 17 54 33 38 31 32
*Students who are not cleared to return are provided feedback on what additional steps they might consider taking. Many petition again and are cleared in a future semester.