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Suspension Appeal Process

The Suspension Appeal process is provided for students who can provide valid documentation of extenuating circumstances which contributed to their suspension. Only students with extenuating circumstances such as work, poor study environment, finances, illness, or personal relationships that have adversely affected performance: i.e. statement or letter from physician, employer, family members, faculty, academic advisor, Counseling Center, Educational Accessibility will be accepted for review by the Appeals Committee. In addition, students must provide a plan for how the extraordinary event(s) have been resolved and provide proof to the Appeals Committee that further difficulties will not occur if the student is allowed to continue coursework in the next semester.

Suspension date

Deadline to submit form and documentation

Decision posted to LEO transcript

May 2013 May 20, 2013; 5:00 pm May 22, 2013
December 2013 January 6, 2014; 5:00 pm January 8, 2014
May 2014 May 19, 2014; 5:00 pm May 21, 2014

If you plan to appeal, gather any other documentation that you believe will help your case, e.g., memo from a doctor, disability test results, medical or psychological evaluation, etc. Include only essential materials, please.

NOTE: Students without documentation will not be able to appeal their suspension.

NOTE: Please be aware of the specified deadlines; late submissions will not be considered.

The Suspension Appeal Committee is comprised of a faculty representative from each academic college. Appeal committee member names are not released; appeal decisions are communicated to the student via ODU email and the permanent address listed on LEO. Please be sure to check ODU email and update all addresses in LEO.

Decisions by the appeals committee are final.

Students may submit appeals by either:

1) Fill out the suspension appeal form electronically Suspension Appeal Form
2) Print the suspension appeal form and fax to 757-683-6884.

Regardless of which method you choose to submit your appeal, please fax your supporting documentation to 757-683-6884 or deliver by hand to the Office of Continuance in the Student Success Center.

The Office of Continuance can assist you in developing a success plan, should your appeal be denied or you elect to voluntarily sit out for the required first suspension. To schedule an appointment, please email advisor@odu.edu from your Old Dominion University email account, making sure to include your UIN, major, day time phone number, and the most convenient days/times you can meet. An advisor will email you back with your appointment day and time. You may also call the office at 757-683-3699.

Tips for Writing Your Appeal

  • Gather documentation to support your reasons for poor academic performance. Examples of supporting documentation would be a letter from a healthcare provider, a funeral announcement, a letter of support from a faculty member or a Student Success Coordinator.
  • Reference your ODU academic record and additional transcripts if you have attended another college or university since your suspension from ODU. Be reflective, detailed, descriptive, and specific.
  • Be sure that your appeal letter adheres to standard written English language conventions and that it has been thoroughly proofread.
  • Type your appeal so it is professional and organized.
  • Address each reason why you did not achieve your academic potential.
  • Reference each piece of documentation that supports your appeal. For example, if you experienced academic and personal difficulties because of the death of a family member, please enclose and reference a funeral announcement.
  • Address the extent to which you used each support service at the college. For example, if you went to the Student Success Center, please state how many times you received tutoring and specify the subject areas in which you were tutored.
  • If you did not use support services at the college, please describe in detail the reasons for your failure to use the support services that are available at the College.
  • Looking at the reasons for your lack of academic progress that you listed in Paragraph 1, please address the changes that have been made that would allow you to be academically successful. If your situation has not changed, explain how you will manage the situation.
  • Are you working? How will you balance your work and school obligations?
  • Discuss the College support services that you will utilize.
  • Discuss the specific courses you plan to take if you are permitted to return.
  • Discuss your short term and long term goals.


  • This is the only contact a student has with the committee, so it is critical that this statement be well thought out and well written. Although a student may handwrite the statement, typewritten documents are easier for the committee members to read and review.
  • The statement should include only relevant information regarding the circumstances of the suspension or dismissal.
  • Supporting documents and all other pertinent information should be included with a student's letter and appeal form. If the student is submitting an appeal form online, then all supporting documentation must be either faxed or hand delivered by the deadline.
  • It is not sufficient for a student to say, "I know I can do better." If expected improved performance is part of a student's petition, the student must provide a strong rationale for the probability of this improvement.
  • Successful statements are typically one page in length but no more than two.
  • If applicable, the student should submit supportive information concerning the conditions or situations leading to his/her suspension. Such information should clearly show that the student has resolved all pertinent challenges. Statements or letters from doctors, counselors, ecclesiastical leaders, employers, advisors, faculty, etc., will be helpful only if they verify that the student has resolved the condition that led to the suspension or has the condition under control such that it will no longer affect academic performance in the next semester of enrollment.