Skip to Main Content
Capabilities /

Higher Education

Advising colleges and universities to a greater degree.

More than 200 higher education clients trust Husch Blackwell to handle their compliance, operations and litigation legal services, allowing them to focus on their educational mission. Our clients include major research institutions, academic medical centers, religiously affiliated institutions, regional universities, private colleges, nursing and allied health schools, community colleges, proprietary schools and publicly traded school groups.

With more than 25 attorneys, our Higher Education group is one of the largest such practices in the United States. It includes attorneys with decades of experience resolving the most complex challenges confronting colleges and universities. Several of our education attorneys gained valuable industry insights while serving as in-house counsel at educational institutions, major corporations and government agencies, including the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice.

Related areas of focus:

Our guidance to clients in the higher education sector includes:

Compliance and strategy

We supply higher education institutions with top-level comprehensive policy and procedure audits, as well as in-depth systems audits, to identify and remedy potential liabilities. Our team provides access to model and customized policies to help meet program requirements, as well as any necessary training.

Student Affairs

We draft policies, review and update student handbooks and provide comprehensive training on scenarios such as student discipline, complaints of faculty and dismissal. We also conduct investigations of alleged student misconduct and recommend options for resolution under existing institutional policies. Our team has vast experience in matters involving Title IX/sexual harassment, the Clery Act, the First Amendment and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Title IV Federal Student Aid

We understand that Federal Student Aid is not only a lifeline for students but also critical in sustaining institutions. Our Higher Education team helps clients obtain initial approval to participate in the Title IV student aid programs and advises on their continued participation. We provide experienced and effective representation when institutions are faced with adverse audit or program review findings.

Litigation and administrative actions

Our team regularly defends clients in litigation involving civil rights, class actions, the False Claims Act and contracts. From the start of an investigation through its resolution, our clients receive guidance and advocacy from our experienced trial attorneys.

Labor and employment

We help higher education institutions with a full range of education-specific matters and compliance issues, such as tenure, employee benefits, immigration, compensation, discrimination, internal revenue and collective bargaining issues.

The online Clery Compliance Toolset streamlines the reporting process, saving time and money.
Learn more 
Testimonial John Jasinski, President, Northwest Missouri State University

“We love Husch Blackwell because they’re not at all about status quo. They help us to understand who we are, where we’re at and where we need to go.”

Read how invested partnerships make a difference
Client Results

OCR dismisses university student's complaint of discrimination.

See full case study