Planned Educational Leave Program (PELP)

Planned Educational Leave (PELP) Topics

Planned Educational Leave Program (PELP)

The Planned Educational Leave Program (PELP) allows students to take a temporary pause in enrollment and academic work, while guaranteeing return to their program to resume their studies. The purpose of PELP is to increase a student’s potential for successfully completing their academic program by allowing time to pursue other activities that will assist with: clarifying educational goals; job opportunities away from campus (not related to academic research); and time to resolve personal, financial or medical concerns.

Due Dates for PELP Application

  • Students who have enrolled in any units must send the PELP email template to their Graduate Coordinator, by the first day of quarter instruction, in order to refund all quarter fees.  After the first day of instruction, a percentage of fees will be owed based on the OUR Schedule of Refunds.
  • Students who have not enrolled should send the PELP email by the 10th day of the quarter, but may initiate PELP until the last day of quarter instruction.  
  • International students must submit the PELP application by the 10th day of the quarter.  Most often international students do not stay in the US during PELP, but in some circumstances, and with approval of SISS, they may remain in the US.  SISS must be notified when international students go on PELP.  

PELP Eligibility

  • Continuing graduate students are eligible to participate in PELP for up to three quarters, with the approval of a program Graduate Advisor and the Graduate Studies Associate Dean for Students.
  • New graduate students are not eligible to PELP during their first term of instruction.
    • New students who have not yet enrolled may be considered for deferred admission – contact your Graduate Program Coordinator prior to the first day of instruction.
    • New students who have enrolled in any units may withdraw from the quarter, and submit the Readmission Application when ready to return. Fees may be charged if withdrawing after the first day of instruction.
  • International Students in F-1 or J-1 status must contact the Services for International Students & Scholars (SISS) office through iGlobal prior to or within 24 hours of submitting a PELP request.
  • PELP is a leave from all academic studies at UC Davis.  Research leave or completing the thesis/dissertation are not permitted reasons to utilize PELP.
    • Students taking research leave outside California state may apply for In Absentia, a reduced fee status.
  • Approval of the PELP request depends, in part, upon the expectation that the student will return to an enrolled status to continue their education.
    • Students who do not plan to return to their studies, or who require an extended period of leave can complete the Cancellation/Withdrawal webform through the Office of the University Registrar, and apply for Readmission at a later date if needed.

Restrictions While on PELP Status

  • Academic employment - Students on PELP may not be employed in a student academic appointment (Teaching Assistant (TA), Graduate Student Researcher (GSR), etc.).
  • Fellowship funds - Students on PELP are not eligible to receive fellowship funds, and may need to repay any fellowship funds already received for the quarter they begin PELP.
  • Financial aid and grants will be discontinued for the duration of your leave, and you may need to repay any financial aid funds already received for the quarter. Please contact the Financial Aid Office for additional information.
  • UC SHIP Health Insurance - Students on PELP may voluntarily self-pay for UC SHIP student health benefits for one quarter. If a student intends to continue their UC SHIP benefits, they must notify Student Health and Counseling Services before the first day of the quarter in which PELP status begins.  
  • Coursework, examinations, & research - PELP status is a leave from academics and not intended for students to take coursework, exams, or continue their research. While on PELP, students are not eligible to enroll in concurrent courses or earn any academic credit on the UC Davis campus.  Students on PELP may not take the QE, advance to candidacy, or petition for a change of major/objective.
  • Students on PELP may not utilize faculty time, with the exception of contacting a program Graduate Advisor for status updates and return to enrollment planning.
  • Filing Fee status - Students on PELP are not eligible to continue immediately to Filing Fee status. The student must first return to a registered status for at least one quarter before becoming eligible for Filing Fee status.

University Services

Students are inactive during PELP, and are not eligible for university services, with the following exceptions:

  • Student Employment Services – They may consult Student Employment Services while on leave.
  • Advising and Counseling - Limited advising and counseling services at the Counseling Center are available to assist with the transition of leaving and returning to the university.
  • Library - A library card from Shields Library can be purchased for $12.50 per quarter. Borrowing privileges and online access are limited.
  • Activities and Recreation Center (ARC) - During PELP, students are eligible to purchase an ARC membership.
  • Housing - Students may remain in Graduate & Family Housing for one quarter while on PELP. When students return from PELP they are considered continuing students in regards to housing priority.

Applying for PELP

Prior to applying for PELP, students should discuss a plan for return with a Graduate Advisor (e.g. what degree requirements remain? What courses will be taken after return? If on academic probation, what is the plan to return to good standing after PELP?) Program Graduate Advisor and Graduate Coordinator contact information is available on the Program page

  • Graduate students apply for PELP status by emailing the completed template below to their Graduate Coordinator. The Coordinator will request Graduate Advisor approval and forward the email to the Graduate Studies Senior Advisors for confirmation and final processing through the Registrar's Office.
    • International students should also notify SISS of their intention to apply for PELP status.
  • There is a $70 non-refundable fee for PELP, which is charged directly to the student’s account.

PELP Email Template

  • Student’s full name
  • Student ID number
  • Major
  • Quarter/Year leave is to begin
  • Quarter/Year student will return
  • Name of your major professor and their e-mail address
  • Have you registered for courses?
  • Have you paid registration fees?
  • Have you attended classes?
  • Are you an international student?
    • If you are an international student, have you notified SISS of your leave? (required for approval)
  • A brief statement why you are taking this leave

PELP Time Extension/Reduction

Students may enroll in PELP for up to three quarters at a time.  Students who would like to extend their PELP may submit a PELP Time Extension Request. requests for more than three quarters of PELP must include a statement of justification from a program Graduate Advisor.  PELP beyond three quarters is 

Students who wish to return in an earlier quarter than planned, should notify their Graduate Program Coordinator.