Guidelines for Writing a Retroactive Withdrawal Personal Statement

The retroactive withdrawal request will consist of the submitted online form, a personal statement and official documentation supporting your statement.

A student may request that all grades in an academic period (one or more semesters of continuous enrollment) be retroactively removed and be replaced by entries of ―W on his or her transcript. A retroactive withdrawal may be granted only when a student could neither function normally during the academic period nor be reasonably expected to complete a university withdrawal due to extenuating circumstances such as an incident leading to major physical or mental trauma.

The following issues are not adequate circumstances for a retroactive withdrawal:

  • Lack of time management
  • Working too many hours at a job
  • Poor judgment or bad habits
  • Roommate problems
  • Failed relationships
  • Transition from High School issues
  • Disciplinary withdrawal
  • Ongoing health issues for which accommodations should have been given prior consideration
  • Lack of knowledge of University policies or resources

Generally, requests are not allowed if you have started the fourth semester following the last semester of the withdrawal request, or four or more calendar years have elapsed since the end of the last semester covered by the request, or you have completed a University degree and the semester in question was used to meet your graduation requirements.

Your personal statement must present a full account of why you feel you were unable to satisfactorily complete the semester. The extenuating circumstances must have been of major proportion and beyond your control.

Your personal statement must:

  • be clear and concise, yet fully explain the situation
  • include important reference dates
  • adequately explain the extenuating circumstances that prevented you from satisfactorily completing the semester
  • include information on how the situation is resolved and a plan to improve academic performance

Supporting documentation must:

  • clearly support and amplify the personal statement
  • be verifiable, and on letterhead or other official documentation
  • include specific dates noted in your personal statement
  • You may also include any appropriate letters of recommendation from faculty or advisors
  • The most convincing evidence will be from professionals who worked with your during the course of the illness or crisis and not from professionals who saw you after the trauma.

By submitting the appeal, you are also stating that you are aware:

  • Any costs associated with University enrollment, including tuition and fees, will not be refunded.
  • Financial aid will not be adjusted, however, future eligibility may be impacted. For further information, contact Student Financial Services at 491-6321.
  • A request for a retroactive withdrawal for a particular semester may be submitted twice. The second request must include additional documentation not previously submitted.
  • If you have not been formally admitted to a program of study at the University, contact the Division of Continuing Education at (970) 491-5288 with questions about the appeal process.
  • Notice for VETERANS: If you are receiving or have received GI Bill education benefits for the term from which you wish to withdraw, please contact the Veteran Benefits office (970-491-6340) before processing this request to understand the ramifications of a retroactive withdrawal.  
  • Email Scholastic Standards with any questions