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Going on a Leave of Absence FAQs

Will I owe any money if I take a leave of absence?
If you had federal financial aid this semester, you must speak with a Financial Aid counselor, prior to departing IIT, to understand the possible consequences to your financial aid package.

What do I do if I currently have a balance?
If you have any outstanding balance with the university, contact the Student Accounting Office at or 312.567.3794, for payment options.

What happens to my scholarship if I take a leave of absence?
Students returning from an approved leave of absence will have their scholarships reinstated at the same level as when they left the university

Will I still have access to the MyIIT Portal?
While on leave, you will continue to have access to the IIT portal and your emails, as long as you login once every six months.

Can I keep my IIT health Insurance plan?
If you elected IIT health insurance you will not lose coverage for the remainder of the academic year.

Who can help me choose courses to take at another school?
Contact the Office of Undergraduate Affairs to discuss course options, or if you plan on attending another university. IIT also has transfer guides for the local community colleges.

I'm an International student, do I need to do anything additional while I'm on a leave of absence?
If you are returning from a leave for the Fall semester, you must complete the process by April to allow time for I20 and Visa Processing. If you are returning from a leave for the Spring semester, you must complete the process by August to allow time for I20 and Visa Processing. If you have questions about your I20 you can email one of the following counselors: Amy Benck, Tanya DePass, or Karen Spreitzer

If I take a leave of absence, do I have to start repaying my loans?
Maybe. The Stafford loan has a grace period of 6 months and the Perkins loan has a grace period of 9 months, before the student must begin repaying the loan. When you take a leave of absence you will not have to repay your loan until the grace period is up. If the grace period expires, however, when you graduate you will have to begin repaying your loans immediately. It is possible to request an extension to the grace period, but this must be done before the grace period ends. If your grace period runs out in the middle of your leave of absence, you will have to start making payments on your student loans.

Private loans vary by lender and you will need to contact your lender to determine when you will be required to start making payments.

If I withdraw or take a leave of absence during the semester, will that affect my financial aid?
Yes. You should speak to your financial aid counselor prior to withdrawing to understand the financial implications to your award package. Federal regulations govern the return of federal financial aid assistance for recipients who completely withdraw from school in any semester. The policy governs all federal loan and grant programs, including Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, Federal Subsidized Stafford Loans, Federal Perkins Student Loans, Federal PLUS Loans, Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG, and other Title IV programs except, Federal Work-Study.

In general, the law assumes that the student must “earn” federal financial aid awards directly in proportion to the number of days of the term attended. In other words, a student earns financial assistance as they attend class. If a student completely withdraws from all classes during a term, the Office of Financial Aid must calculate the amount of federal aid the student has earned up to the time of withdrawal. For example, if the student attended 40% of the semester, the student will have earned 40% of the federal student aid received.

IIT takes the responsibility on behalf of the student to return unearned federal financial aid funds that were applied directly to institutional charges. These returns may result in institutional charges no longer being covered by financial assistance and the student becomes immediately responsible for the entire outstanding balance on the tuition account.

Do I need to complete my federal loan Exit Counseling at this time?
If during your tenure at IIT, you received federal student loan funds, you are required by federal law to complete exit counseling prior to leaving the university. The purpose of exit counseling is to provide you with important information regarding debt-management strategies and loan repayment, including deferments, grace periods, loan consolidation, and loan default. You may complete your exit counseling online at Please note that you will not be able to receive your transcript until you successfully complete exit counseling.

How do I get my loan payments deferred?
This will happen automatically as long as you are enrolled at least half time. The Registrar’s Office reports the enrollment status of all IIT students each semester to the National Student Loan Database Service (NSLDS). Be sure to follow up with your lender to make sure they have received this information from NSLDS to prevent any delinquent borrower penalties.