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Leave of Absence (Unpaid)

The University recognizes the importance of unpaid leaves of absence for academic purposes such as research, a visiting professorship, completion of doctoral work, and the like, and also acknowledges the appropriateness of such leaves for personal reasons. Such leaves may be granted at the discretion of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, upon the recommendation of the faculty member’s department chair (except in the College of Nursing) and dean. Unpaid leaves may be granted under the following conditions:

  • Unpaid leaves of absence normally are limited to a maximum of one year. Upon the recommendation of the faculty member’s dean and department chair, leaves may be extended upon application to and approval of the Vice President; but, normally, no faculty member or academic administrator will be granted an unpaid leave of absence from the University for more than two consecutive years or for more than two years total during any ten year period.
  • During the term of the unpaid leave, the faculty member will be responsible for payment of all premiums for benefits, including the University portion, in all programs s/he wishes to continue. If, upon the recommendation of one’s department chair and dean, the Vice President for Academic Affairs judges that the unpaid leave is sufficiently in the University’s interest as to warrant the University’s payment of its share of these premiums during the term of the leave, the University may elect to cover some or all of these payments.  In certain limited cases, if the faculty member’s unpaid leave is supported by an extramural grant or fellowship deemed by the VPAA to be sufficiently prestigious and in the University’s interest, the University may, at its sole discretion, provide partial salary for some or all of the period of the leave.
  • The "term" of an unpaid leave of absence refers to the academic year or semester (as the case may be) during which the faculty member is on unpaid leave from the University plus the summer following an academic year during which the faculty member is on unpaid leave. If the unpaid leave is for one semester only and the faculty member either is on the University’s payroll for the other semester of that academic year or has an approved paid or unpaid leave under the Sabbatical Leave Policy or the Family and Medical Leave of Absence Policy, the University’s portion of benefits will be paid by the University for the summer preceding the faculty member’s return to full-time teaching/administration.
  • An official unpaid leave of absence ordinarily is not counted as service for purposes of tenure and advancement in rank. Faculty may voluntarily choose to participate in University, college, and/or departmental service and other activities during their unpaid leave, but normally no compensation will be rendered for such activity.
  • This Unpaid Leave of Absence Policy does not cover leaves of absence due to sabbaticals, illness, disability, accident, pregnancy, or the serious medical condition of a close family member. These cases are covered by the University’s Sabbatical Leave of Absence Policy, short and long term disability plans, and the Family and Medical Leave of Absence Policy.


Office of the Provost

Tolentine Hall, Room 103
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085
Phone: 610.519.4520
Fax: 610.519.6200

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