Help with academic reinstatement

More edits! Thank you everyone for your help. I have just a few more days to submit this, as well as letters of support from my doctor and therapist, and copies of my hospital records.
I made edits based off your feedback and after reading some sample reinstatement letters. Please let me know what you think.

I am writing this letter to appeal my dismissal from Eastern Michigan University. I received the notice of dismissal a few days ago, and would like to take this opportunity to explain the circumstances that led up to my poor performance, and to plead my case for reinstatement. I am confident that moving forward, I will be able to demonstrate my exceptional academic performance if given a second chance.

I transferred to Eastern Michigan this past January, joining in the prestigious College of Health and Human Services to complete my bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science. In those first two months, I stayed on top of my academics, albeit taking a bit longer than my peers to understand the material. I do have a documented learning disability, for which I receive accommodations from the Disability Resource Center. I was doing well, staying on top of my assignments and spending as much time as I could on campus studying.

I tested positive for Covid-19 on March 20, 2021. I had been feeling ill for a week leading up to the positive test result. My symptoms included fatigue, fever, body aches, loss of sense of smell, and shortness of breath. I couldn’t get out of bed for more than 5 minutes without being extremely exhausted, out of breath, and in pain. As the days continued, it became clear that I was not getting better on my own. Two weeks in, I was hospitalized with bilateral pneumonia. During my time there, my oxygen levels continued to drop, and I was briefly put on oxygen. But thankfully my lungs responded to the medication, and I was able to be taken off the oxygen and sent home a few days later.

Recovery from this has not been easy. I am thankful that with time my symptoms have improved. Although some symptoms continue, my illness has mainly resolved, and I am well enough to attend school again. Everyday I give thanks to my friends, family, and medical team, who have played a crucial role in supporting me throughout my recovery. My health took priority these past two semesters, but now that I am on the mend, school comes first.

In order to succeed, there must be a balance between health and academics. My plan for next semester includes working with a primary care physician, and continuing to work with my therapist to develop concentration, relaxation, and communication skills. As an autistic woman who was diagnosed as an adult, it’s taken me years to learn how to properly advocate for myself, but over time I have made significant improvements in that aspect.

In terms of my academics, I will take full use of all the support resources EMU has to offer. I will set up weekly meetings with a peer Success Coach. I will organize or find study groups for each of my classes. I have met with my academic advisor, and we agreed that the best approach would be for me to take a lighter course load this fall, so I can focus on improving my overall G.

I will also make use of the Disability resource center, to get testing and in-class accommodations appropriate for my needs, which include Autism, ADHD, and Anxiety. I will also check-in with my DRC advisor and academic advisor every two weeks, to let them know how things are progressing and what I am struggling with at the time.

I have spent the better part of 5 months recovering. My doctor and therapist can attest to the significant improvements that I’ve made these last few months, and that I am more than well enough to return to campus this fall. With all of that now behind me, I can now switch my focus towards my academics, and put all my energy into being the best student I can be.

Better!

I disagree with @momofboiler1,

PM’ed you with further edits. I think reducing the part about COVID serves to emphasize accommodations and efforts to change. You do not need to change. You got sick.

The school failed you. The first version was better at addressing that, with some edits of course.

Have your parents talked to a dean? This situation is ludicrous. Absolutely ridiculous. You should not have to write this at all. Oh- and please add that you are pursuing a medical withdrawal which would make this letter unnecessary by the way.

I am kind of gobsmacked. It sounds like you caught Covid at THEIR school and THEY did nothing to follow up on your recovery or whether you needed further accommodations despite the fact that you already had disability accommodations? And then they kicked you out of school? That is absolutely insane.

Your last draft is fine. Seriously, it should not take much at all to get back in. The school messed up, not you. The only thing is, I would open with “I am submitting this request for reinstatement in conjunction with my request for retroactive medical withdrawal. A copy of that Petition is enclosed herewith. Quite frankly, I do not believe this request for reinstatement should be required, but I am filing it in an abundance of caution. I would appreciate a single point person being assigned who can assist in unwinding this situation.”

It is very possible the request for reinstatement and retroactive withdrawal is pro forma for Covid and you could literally say, “I caught Covid at your school, ended up hospitalized and came out of the hospital with long haulers syndrome. I am requesting that I be retroactively withdrawn for second semester last year. I am now well enough to attend school and request readmittance. My medical records are attached.”

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I can’t like this post enough. Listen to @Theaterforme!

Hi all! I just wanted to give a quick update. I met with my academic advisor on monday to go over the final details of my appeal. Taking all of your suggestions into account, this was the letter that I submitted:

To whom it may concern,

I am writing this letter to appeal my dismissal from Eastern Michigan University. I received the notice of dismissal a few days ago, and would like to take this opportunity to explain the circumstances that led up to my poor performance, and to plead my case for reinstatement. I am confident that moving forward, I will be able to demonstrate my exceptional academic performance if given a second chance.

I transferred to Eastern Michigan this past January, joining in the prestigious College of Health and Human Services to complete my bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science. In those first two months, I was doing well academically, staying on top of my assignments and spending as much time as I could on campus studying. I do have a documented learning disability, for which I receive accommodations from the Disability Resource Center.

I tested positive for Covid-19 on March 20, 2021. My symptoms included fatigue, fever, body aches, loss of sense of smell, and shortness of breath. I couldn’t get out of bed for more than 5 minutes without being extremely exhausted, out of breath, and in pain. On day 3, I tried to take an exam for one of my classes, but could not finish on time as I struggled to stay awake for the allotted hour I had. My professor was understanding and allowed me to do an extra credit assignment to make up for the questions I had not been able to answer.

I thought I was recovering by day 5, when the symptoms started to improve. By day 9, I thought I had finally recovered. Then on day 10, I started coughing. And on day 13, things took a turn for the worse. I woke up early that morning to record the audio for a presentation that was due that afternoon. My professor was aware of the circumstances and allowed me to record my presentation rather than have to give it live via zoom. As I started recording, I realized I could barely speak for a minute without needing to take a break. But I pushed through. I submitted my presentation and immediately went back to sleep.

But when I woke up a few hours later, I could feel my heart having multiple episodes of palpitations, for no reason. This made me realize something else was happening. I called my cardiologist, who told me to get to the hospital. He was concerned that I had developed a blood clot. When I got to the emergency room, my oxygen was stable at rest. But then they had me walk a few minutes, and it dropped quite low on ambulation. A few hours and a dozen tests later, they determined I had developed bilateral pneumonia. My oxygen levels continued to drop, and so I was admitted. During my time there, they continued to monitor my oxygen levels, and I was briefly put on oxygen. But thankfully my lungs responded to the medication, and I was able to be taken off the oxygen and sent home a few days later.

For the 10 days after I was released, I remained in complete isolation at home, lacking the energy to do even the most basic of functions such as shower or use the restroom. My chest felt like there was a band wrapped tightly around it, and it hurt to breathe. For weeks, I struggled to move without feeling winded.

Recovery from this has not been easy. I am thankful that with time my symptoms have improved. Although some symptoms continue, my illness has mainly resolved, and I am well enough to attend school again. Every day I give thanks to my friends, family, and medical team, who have played a crucial role in supporting me throughout my recovery. My health took priority these past two semesters, but now that I am on the mend, school comes first.

In order to succeed, there must be a balance between health and academics. My plan for next semester includes working with a primary care physician on my health and continuing to work with my therapist to develop concentration, relaxation, and communication skills. As an autistic woman who was diagnosed as an adult, it’s taken me years to learn how to properly advocate for myself, but over time I have made significant improvements in that aspect.

In terms of my academics, I will make full use of all the support resources EMU has to offer, and I will set up weekly meetings with a peer Success Coach, and organize or find study groups for each of my classes. I have met with my academic advisor, and we agreed that the best approach would be for me to take a moderate course load this fall, so I can focus on maintaining academics and health. My study plan includes spending 2 hours per credit per class studying on campus, following the plan agreed upon with my Success Coach to ensure that I stay on top of my studies.

I will continue to make use of the Disability resource center. As before, I will also check-in routinely with my DRC advisor and academic advisor, to let them know how things are progressing.

I have spent the better part of 5 months recovering. My doctor and therapist can attest to the significant improvements that I’ve made these last few months, and that I am more than well enough to return to campus this fall. With all of that now behind me, I can now switch my focus towards my academics, and put all my energy into being the best student I can be.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

-Emily Ojeda

I submitted it and supporting medical documents yesterday afternoon. I was told it would take up to a week to hear back from the school board. But to my surprise, I received a decision less than 24 hours later: approved! There are some conditions to it, including a minimum semester GPA and meeting with a Success Coach on a regular basis, both of which will only help me in the long run.
I wanted to leave this updated letter here in case there is anyone in a similar situation who could benefit from seeing an example of a successful medical appeal for reinstatement.
I also wanted to thank you all for your help in navigating this incredibly stressful situation. I still have to appeal for financial aid and apply for a retroactive medical withdrawal, both of which I have a few weeks left to do.
Thank you!

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Congratulations! I’m so glad it worked out for you!

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Congratulations!

I am glad this worked (and that you kept the details of your illness in there_.

I would ask the moderator to remove your name. I will try to alert them too.

So happy to hear this. And I hope you hear about a medical withdrawal with grades erased, too.

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Congratulations! Great job advocating for yourself.