Category Archives: Legal

Higher education in the courtroom.


Alleging Decades of Bias, Supporters of HBCU Sue for Funds

Students and alumni of Cheyney University of Pennsylvania have restarted a decades-old lawsuit against the state and federal governments, asserting that the historically black institution has been inadequately funded, The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

The group, named “Heeding Cheyney’s Call,” argues that the university needs more money than the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education’s other 13 institutions because of decades of systematic discrimination. The group says Cheyney’s enrollm…


Northwestern Professor Sues Student Who Accused Him of Sexual Assault

Peter Ludlow, a professor of philosophy at Northwestern University who has been at the center of a long-running controversy over an undergraduate student’s allegation that he sexually assaulted her and that Northwestern mishandled her complaint, is suing the student for defamation, the Chicago Tribune reported. In his lawsuit, filed on Tuesday in a state court in Illinois, Mr. Ludlow contends that the student knowingly made false statements to the news media and to Northwestern professors after …


Another Lawsuit Is Filed Against the For-Profit Corinthian Colleges

The Wisconsin Department of Justice has sued Corinthian Colleges Inc., asserting that an Everest College location in Milwaukee used false job-placement statistics to mislead students into enrolling, among other things, the Journal Sentinel reports. The allegations are similar to those featured in many other state and federal lawsuits that have been filed against the company in the past year, including by California and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The lawsuit alleges that Corinthian…


3 Questions Left Unanswered by Chapel Hill’s Academic-Fraud Report

After the latest report of academic fraud at the University of North Carolina flagship was released on Wednesday, administrators said that, disturbing as the findings were, the campus’s four-year nightmare might finally end.

“I believe we now know all that we are able to know about what happened and how it happened,” said the system’s president, Thomas W. Ross, according to an account in The Daily Tar Heel.

But the 136-page report, the result of an investigation led by a former federal prosecuto…


3 Key Findings in Chapel Hill’s Academic-Fraud Investigation

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Wednesday announced the findings of a long-awaited, independent investigation into academic fraud in its department of African and Afro-American studies. The comprehensive, 136-page report tells a gripping narrative full of new revelations in the prolonged scandal. The findings take aim at a number of people at Chapel Hill who have previously been implicated in the scandal but who have denied any knowledge of or role in the alleged fraud.

Here a…


University Paid $4.5-Million in Legal Fees for Fatal Lab Fire at UCLA

The University of California paid nearly $4.5-million in legal fees to defend itself and a UCLA professor in the case of a 2008 lab fire that left one dead, the Los Angeles Times reports. Records obtained by the Times show that nearly five dozen lawyers and other staff members billed the university for upwards of 7,700 hours of work on the case.

On December 29, 2008, a chemical ignited and burned a 23-year-old research assistant, Sheharbano (Sheri) Sangji, who died 18 days later. The professor …


Free-Speech Lawsuit About Student’s Remarks on Lesbianism May Proceed

A free-speech lawsuit in which a former student at the University of New Mexico has accused it of blasting her views on lesbianism may proceed in court, a federal judge ruled last month. The Albuquerque Journal reports that Judge M. Christina Armijo of the U.S. District Court in Albuquerque denied the university’s motion to dismiss the case, which was filed last year by Monica Pompeo.

The case stems from a film critique Ms. Pompeo completed as part of a class in 2012. In the critique, she called…


College Paid Oscar Winner $26,050 Not to Sue Over Commencement Flap

Pasadena City College agreed to pay an Academy Award-winning screenwriter $26,050 not to take legal action after the college canceled—but later restored—his invitation to be its commencement speaker last spring, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Explicit photographs of the screenwriter, Dustin Lance Black, an alumnus of the Pasadena college, were posted online earlier this year, prompting the college to revoke an informal invitation for him to speak on the campus in May. Mr. Black threatened legal …


Former Athletes File Antitrust Suit Against TV Networks

A group of former college football and basketball players has sued major television networks and athletic conferences, saying they have illegally used the athletes’ names and images in violation of antitrust laws, USA Today reports. Amid a flood of lawsuits aimed at clearing the way for college athletes to be compensated, this suit is the first to name television networks as defendants.

According to USA Today, the defendants include “nearly all of the national over-the-air and cable television n…


Christian-College Group Settles Suit by President Who Was Fired Abruptly

The Council for Christian Colleges and Universities has reached a settlement with a former president, Edward O. Blews Jr., who sued the group after he was unexpectedly ousted, in October 2013.

Among other things, Mr. Blews alleged in the lawsuit that the council did not have grounds to dismiss him, and that the way it handled the dismissal violated the terms of his contract.

According to a news release from the council, both sides agreed to keep the terms of the settlement confidential. But the …