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PROMISE Policy on Deferrals and Leaves of Absence

Deferral Policy

A student can defer his/her PROMISE for up to two years after being awarded.  Deferrals are granted to students wishing to postpone their education for various reasons.  Students who wish to defer their PROMISE Scholarship to attend an out-of-state institution may do so for ONE SEMESTER.  If a student enrolls out of state for one semester or less, he/she will be eligible to reclaim the PROMISE Scholarship upon his/her return to a West Virginia college or university.

Board Policy #5 states: A student who has established PROMISE eligibility, but who chooses to enroll in an out-of-state institution, may reestablish eligibility if the student has enrolled for only one semester at an out-of-state institution and who otherwise meets the PROMISE eligibility requirements.  Complete listing of the PROMISE Board policies.

A student who chooses to defer his/her PROMISE Scholarship must notify the institution he/she plans on attending.

Leave of Absence Policies

(as found in the Scholarship Board Policies)

  1. Personal Leave

    The PROMISE Board does not wish to grant personal leaves of absence for any reason.
     
  2. Medical Leave

    If a student receives a medical leave of absence from the institution in which s/he is enrolled, the student will not be required to pay back any PROMISE Scholarship funds disbursed on his/her behalf during the term of the leave. The student will also not be required to complete the mandated amount of credits for the academic term for which medical leave is granted in order to retain PROMISE eligibility. The student will have a maximum eight semesters of eligibility if pursuing a baccalaureate degree or maximum of four semesters if pursuing an associate’s degree; a semester of eligibility will be reduced for the term on medical leave if the leave was granted after payment was made to the institution. In an effort to further assist students, an institution will have the opportunity to allow a scholar to “buy back” the term in which the scholarship was disbursed, but was not completed academically. In this scenario, a student may pay back the institution the amount that was given from the PROMISE program in order for it to appear that the student did not attend that term. The money paid back to the institution would be recouped by the PROMISE program.

    The student would be deemed eligible to renew in one of the following ways:
    1. if the student has previously finished two terms and is eligible to renew, s/he may do so for the upcoming term or,
    2. if the student has completed only one term towards the current year’s award, then the one term completed and the subsequent semester after the leave would be used to determine renewal criteria.
    3. if a student does not complete the first term of the award, he or she would be deemed eligible based on the upcoming two terms of receiving PROMISE funding.
    If a student takes classes at his/her own expense, those too, will be included in assessing eligibility. These classes may have been taken during a summer term, for example, or while on leave. An internet class may be an example in this scenario.
  3. Family Medical Leave or Bereavement Leave

    If a student needs to take time off from college due to the medical care of, or death of, an immediate family member, the PROMISE Scholarship will be suspended until the following semester. The student will have a maximum eight semesters of eligibility if pursuing a baccalaureate degree or maximum of four semesters if pursuing an associate’s degree; a semester of eligibility will be reduced for the term on medical leave if the leave was granted after payment was made to the institution. In an effort to further assist students, an institution will have the opportunity to allow a scholar to “buy back” the term in which the scholarship was disbursed, but was not completed academically. In this scenario, a student may pay back the institution the amount that was given from the PROMISE program in order for it to appear that the student did not attend that term. The money paid back to the institution would be recouped by the PROMISE program.

    The student would be deemed eligible to renew in one of the following ways:
    1. if the student has previously finished two terms and is eligible to renew, s/he may do so for the upcoming term or,
    2. if the student has completed only one term towards the current year’s award, then the one term completed and the subsequent semester after the leave would be used to determine renewal criteria.
    3. if a student does not complete the first term of the award, he or she would be deemed eligible based on the upcoming two terms of receiving PROMISE funding.
    If a student takes classes at his/her own expense, those too, will be included in assessing eligibility. These classes may have been taken during a summer term, for example, or while on leave.
  4. Military Leave
    A student may defer his/her scholarship for up to seven years if entering military service. If a student is called to duty while attending college, the PROMISE Scholarship will be put on hold during that time. If it is the case that a student must withdraw mid-term, the student will not be penalized and not need to pay back the award amount. The student will have a maximum eight semesters of eligibility if pursuing a baccalaureate degree or maximum of four semesters if pursuing an associate’s degree and a semester of eligibility will not be reduced for the term on military leave even if the leave was granted after payment was made to the institution.

    The student would be deemed eligible to renew in one of the following ways:
    1. if the student has previously finished two terms and is eligible to renew, s/he may do so for the upcoming term or,
    2. if the student has completed only one term towards the current year’s award, then the one term completed and the subsequent semester after the leave would be used to determine renewal criteria.
    3. if a student does not complete the first term of the award, he or she would be deemed eligible based on the upcoming two terms of receiving PROMISE funding.
    If a student takes classes at his/her own expense, those too, will be included in assessing eligibility. These classes may have been taken during a summer term, for example, or while on leave.
  5. Other Unforeseen Leave

    If there is any other unforeseen leave possibility that cannot be put into policy at this time, the director, at her discretion, of the PROMISE Scholarship program, has the authority to approve in conjunction with the college or university.  This leave may include co-op and study abroad opportunities.

 

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