Leave of Absence & Vacation Policy
Revised November 2016
LEAVE/ VACATION for PhD Students
This statement applies to full time PhD students in good academic standing at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine (UMMSM). Similar to UMMSM employees, trainees may observe the normal holiday periods (New Year’s Day, M.L. King’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day). PhD students may also receive stipend support for up to 15 calendar days of sick leave per year. PhD students may also receive maternity / paternity leave as outlined below.
PhD students are also permitted to receive stipend support during a reasonable number of vacation days. The exact number and timing of vacation days is negotiated between student and mentor or for 1st year PIBS students, the PIBS Program Director. However, vacation days are normally expected to be no more than 14 calendar days.
Individuals requiring periods of time away from their research training experience longer than specified here must seek approval from their mentor and program director for an unpaid leave of absence. Well in advance of the proposed leave of absence, the trainee must submit a written request, which includes the reason for the request as well as the date the proposed leave will begin and end. This request, once approved by the mentor and program director, should be submitted to the Office of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies, which will seek the necessary final approval from the Senior Associate Dean.
GRADUATE SCHOOL POLICY ON CHILDCARE ACCOMMODATION
The graduate school recognizes that doctoral students receiving a stipend from a fellowship, teaching or research assistantship may require a paid leave of absence due to pregnancy or the need to care for a new child. The process to secure the leave should follow the steps described below:
(1) Graduate students must apply for a leave using the leave of absence form. This form, available on the graduate school website, should be submitted one semester before the intended start of the leave, if at all possible.
(2) The length of the paid leave of absence should not exceed a total of three months. Any student requesting a longer period of leave may be granted an unpaid leave of absence.
(3) Any accommodations and funding required during the leave must be provided by the academic home school/college, department or program. This is particularly important if the student is the recipient of a research assistantship from a federal grant (NSF, NIH, DOE, DoD, etc…) or an external fellowship without maternity/paternity leave stipulations, since a student cannot keep receiving stipend payments from these sources during the leave of absence.
(4) Requests to extend the leave of absence beyond three months can be made only due to medical reasons during the leave period and require the submission of proper documentation. Any leave extensions may be granted as unpaid leaves of absence.
(5) The time spent on leave of absence due to childcare accommodation will not count against the student’s academic time-to-completion in the corresponding graduate program
(6) During the graduate tenure a given student can only benefit once from this policy.
(7) On a case by case basis, the Graduate School may consider two doctoral students for co-parenting the same child and the conditions of the accommodation will vary. Requests can be directed to the Dean of the Graduate School.
(8) Any other cases not contemplated in this document should be directed for consultation by the Dean of the Graduate School. Once a student returns from an approved leave, he/she will need to submit an application for readmission form. If the student returns within the approved leave time frame, the Graduate School will simply approve. If the student returns outside of the approved length of time, the readmission form will be reviewed.