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Mitigating Circumstances

Patrick & Henry Community College considers a mitigating circumstance as a major occurrence completely out of a student’s control that might have a significant and adverse impact on their academic performance within a given semester. Prospective students must request mitigating circumstances after the course withdrawal date. Claims must be submitted within 12 months of the end of term for which the course was taken.

Circumstances can include the following situations

  • A sudden illness or injury that is extended which requires hospitalization, is life threatening and prevents the student from attending classes, studying, completing assignments and tests, for an extended period. The student may be contagious and as a result may be a danger to the College community.
  • Death of an immediate loved one (i.e., mother, father, sister, brother, husband, wife, child, or grandparent) that affects the student’s ability to attend classes, study, or complete assignments and tests. Documentation is required (i.e., obituary or death certificate).
  • A flare-up of a long-term health issue such as a chronic illness or a mental health condition. Documentation from a professional (i.e., doctor, medical records, or hospital records) is accepted as verification.
  • Mobilization or call to active duty for military students. Documentation, such as military orders is required.

Other circumstances that are not considered viable may include, but are not limited to:

  • Last minute computer issues that prevent the student from completing their work
  • Minor illness or injury that doesn’t affect the student’s academic performance for more than a few days
  • Financial situations (i.e., having to work to provide for family, etc.)
  • Transportation or childcare issues


For more information, contact the Mitigating Circumstances Coordinator to determine if their situation qualifies as a mitigating circumstance.

Joyce Divens,

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