Higher Education

Community colleges, four-year colleges and universities don’t operate under a traditional business model, nor do they function in the same manner as many nonprofit organizations. The rules are different in education, which is why we have a team of attorneys dedicated to serving the legal needs of institutions of higher education.

We realize that government regulations for schools can be daunting, given Title IX regulations, the Clery Act, search and seizure laws, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Open Meetings and Freedom of Information acts, just for starters. We know the laws and can help you successfully and effectively operate within their boundaries.

To help offset your rising operations costs, we can identify and secure economic incentives for expansion. And because we’re a full-service law firm, we can tackle the challenges that face schools on a daily basis, such as contract negotiations, employee benefits packages, intellectual property and patent matters, litigation and privacy issues.
We are members of:  MiCUPA and

  • Trusted Advisors
  • Services
  • Testimonials

Trusted Advisors


Pamela C. Enslen
Chair
269.276.8112
Kalamazoo

Edward J. Bardelli
616.752.2165
Grand Rapids

Michael J. Brady
248.784.5032
Southfield

Jason L. Byrne
616.752.2263
Grand Rapids

Melissa N. Collar
616.752.2209
Grand Rapids

John N. Cooper II
269.276.8105
Kalamazoo

Kelly R.
Hollingsworth

616.752.2714
Grand Rapids

Ian R. Kennedy
269.276.8111
Kalamazoo

Madelaine C. Lane
616.752.2468
Grand Rapids

Heidi A. Lyon
616.752.2496
Grand Rapids

Matthew T. Nelson
616.752.2539
Grand Rapids

Jeffrey A. Ott
616.752.2170
989.698.3770
Grand Rapids
Midland

Nathan W. Steed
616.752.2723
Grand Rapids

David M. Thoms
248.784.5093
269.276.8100
Southfield
Kalamazoo

Dawn Garcia Ward
616.396.3039
Holland

Michael E. Wooley
989.698.3715
Midland

Services

Some of the services we provide to college and university clients include:
  • Charitable and planned giving guidance
  • Employment law counsel and litigation
  • Employee benefits counsel
  • Endowment administration
  • FERPA
  • Freedom of Information Act compliance
  • Grant audit defense
  • Grievance administration and arbitration
  • HIPAA compliance
  • Immigration of international faculty and students and I-9 compliance
  • Information Governance
  • Information technology agreements and policies
  • Intellectual property – policies and filings
  • Insurance policy review/audits
  • Labor relations
  • Licensing issues and disputes
  • Litigation
  • Lobbying
  • Open Meetings Act compliance
  • Real estate and construction projects
  • Records Information Management
  • Title IX compliance
  • Trust and estate services

Testimonials

“We utilize Warner Norcross for most of our legal services including contract reviews, Memo of Understandings, labor laws, specific cases for Human Resources and internal procedural review. I have learned to really appreciate our relationship with Warner Norcross. They are almost always available, know our institution and have excellent response and turnaround time on requests. They have established an excellent working relationship with us and we value their legal expertise and guidance. I get the personalized “touch” from the attorneys I deal with and have confidence in their direction and advice. We had a situation that required specific expertise and contacted Warner Norcross. While they could handle the situation, they knew of a firm that had great success with this type of litigation and recommended them to me. That example speaks very loudly for their commitment to our success. They perform important risk management functions for the College as well.  I have full confidence in the work they do and feel we have a ‘partner,’ not just an attorney, but an ‘invested partner’ who has our best interest at heart. I would certainly recommend Warner Norcross.” - T. Friesner, Alma College

* * *

“Pam Enslen provides excellent legal services for Western Michigan University, including successful litigation defense. The field of higher education law is complex and unique, and Pam quickly assimilated her specialized employment and labor expertise to our higher education environment, as well. She is extraordinarily intelligent, thorough, caring, knowledgeable, and works extremely well and collaboratively with both clients and in-house counsel. Without hesitation, I would recommend Pam Enslen to other universities and colleges, organizations and public and private entities.” - C. Hustoles, Western Michigan University

* * *

"My professional association with Mr. Wooley started in the early 2000s when I was vice president for academic affairs at Saginaw Valley State University. During those years, I hired a handful of faculty members from China, India and Taiwan, and Mr. Wooley provided excellent experience and effective service in handling their immigration papers. Most have become valuable members. I retired from Saginaw Valley State University in 2006 and in my new capacity as vice president for international affairs of Ming Chuan University, a Taiwan-based higher education institution, the first and only university in Asia accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, I continue to utilize Mr. Wooley's services. Recently, Mr.Wooley successfully processed an application for an H-1B visa for a staff member of Ming Chuan University-Michigan in Taiwan. Mr. Wooley is a trusted legal counsel and his service is professional, responsive, prompt and clear. He delivers!" - Robert S. P. Y., Taipei, Taiwan






NOTICE. Although we would like to hear from you, we cannot represent you until we know that doing so will not create a conflict of interest. Also, we cannot treat unsolicited information as confidential. Accordingly, please do not send us any information about any matter that may involve you until you receive a written statement from us that we represent you.

By clicking the ‘ACCEPT’ button, you agree that we may review any information you transmit to us. You recognize that our review of your information, even if you submitted it in a good faith effort to retain us, and even if you consider it confidential, does not preclude us from representing another client directly adverse to you, even in a matter where that information could and will be used against you.

Please click the ‘ACCEPT’ button if you understand and accept the foregoing statement and wish to proceed.

ACCEPT CANCEL

NOTICE. Although we would like to hear from you, we cannot represent you until we know that doing so will not create a conflict of interest. Also, we cannot treat unsolicited information as confidential. Accordingly, please do not send us any information about any matter that may involve you until you receive a written statement from us that we represent you.

By clicking the ‘ACCEPT’ button, you agree that we may review any information you transmit to us. You recognize that our review of your information, even if you submitted it in a good faith effort to retain us, and even if you consider it confidential, does not preclude us from representing another client directly adverse to you, even in a matter where that information could and will be used against you.

Please click the ‘ACCEPT’ button if you understand and accept the foregoing statement and wish to proceed.

ACCEPTCANCEL