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Gap Year or Semester

Deferring Enrollment

Students who are offered admission to the William & Mary freshman class may request a deferral of their enrollment for one semester or one year by notifying Senior Associate Dean of Admission David Trott of their intentions in writing. Students accepted to the St Andrews William & Mary Joint Degree Programme may only request a full year deferral. All requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis and generally will be approved if they indicate thoughtful intent to spend the gap experience in a way that will facilitate personal growth.  Exceptions to extend a deferral to two years, for military or religious service for example, will be made on a case-by-case basis. 

In order to be eligible for a gap experience, the student must submit an enrollment deposit by May 1st and should notify the Admission Office of the intent to defer enrollment by June 1st.  Requests made after June 1st may still be approved, however, it will depend on the composition of the class and the overall volume of requests.

Those who are approved for a gap experience must commit to enrolling the following spring or fall and will have their enrollment deposit moved to reserve a space in that entering term or class. Students must still submit a final high school transcript at the end of the academic year in which they were first admitted. Approved students will receive an email and form in early December from the Admission Office asking them to confirm their intent to enroll in the spring or fall. 

Students may not enroll as a degree-seeking candidate at any other institution or complete more than 15 hours of college credit during their gap year, or 6 hours if deferring for a semester.  Admission remains contingent upon continuing to meet high standards of academic performance and personal conduct throughout the gap year.

Students offered admission from the waitlist generally are expected to enroll in the fall, and typically are not approved to defer admission.  Additionally, Early Decision is not appropriate for students who want to consider deferring their enrollment in order to pursue a gap-year opportunity.

Transfer students wishing to seek deferred enrollment should contact the Director of Transfer Admission directly at