Sarah Pheasant advises clients on various aspects of education law and regulatory compliance, including issues pertaining to the Higher Education Act, Title IV federal student aid programs, state educational licensing laws and the accreditation of postsecondary institutions. She has helped to advise non-profit and for-profit educational institutions and private investors on complex transactions, including changes of ownership involving institutions of higher education.

Before joining the firm, Sarah handled a diverse range of litigation, from pharmaceutical product liability and white-collar criminal defense to legal malpractice and securities litigation. She has also advised on legislative and policy matters around elder care and non-profit administration.

Education Industry Transactions and Contracts

  • Represents clients in purchases and sales of institutions or their assets
  • Represents private institutional clients in conversions from proprietary to not-for-profit status

Higher Education Act and Federal Student Aid Programs

  • Counsels clients on U.S. Department of Education negotiated rulemaking processes
  • Advises clients on matters arising from institutional participation in federal student aid programs, including change of ownership processes and requirements, campus crime, safety and sexual assault regulations under the Clery Act and Title IX of the Higher Education Act
Analyzing the Impacts of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision to End Affirmative Action
Analyzing the Impacts of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision to End Affirmative Action

Related Legal Services


Bar Admissions

District of Columbia

Court Admissions

U.S. Supreme Court


Harvard Law School
J.D. Journal of Legislation, Women's Law Journal, Journal on Law & Public Policy

Swarthmore College
B.A. cum laude

Insights & Events

最新 May 2024

ED Delays Initial Financial Value Transparency and Gainful Employment Reporting Until October 1, and Releases Multiple Additional Guidance Documents

6 min read  
最新 January 2024

ED Adopts New Financial Value Transparency and Gainful Employment Requirements

14 min read  
最新 January 2024

U.S. Department of Education Publishes Guidance on Permissible Strategies to Increase Diversity and Opportunity in Higher Education

7 min read  
最新 August 2023

Complying with Students for Fair Admissions: Initial Responses by Institutions and Agencies

10 min read  
最新 August 2023

Complying with Students for Fair Admissions: U.S. Departments of Education and Justice Issue Joint Guidance for Institutions

7 min read  
最新 July 2023

Next Stage Considerations About the Supreme Court’s Affirmative Action Decision: How to Put the Warning Letter from the State Attorneys General in Context

3 min read  
最新 July 2023

U.S. Supreme Court Invalidates Race-Conscious Admissions: Key Considerations for Postsecondary Institutions, Employers and Others

20 min read  
最新 June 2023

State Legislatures Targeting DEI in Higher Education

9 min read  
最新 June 2023

ED Proposes Expansive “Financial Value Transparency and Gainful Employment” Regulations Affecting All Title IV-Participating Postsecondary Institutions

11 min read  
最新 May 2023

U.S. Department of Education Indefinitely Delays Expanded Third-Party Servicer Requirements

4 min read  
Other Perspectives

Firm Blog Contributions

  • Discerning Data – a forum that discusses developments in privacy, cybersecurity, information governance and data analytics

Leadership & Community

Pro Bono

  • Washington Lawyers’ Committee
  • Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
  • Election Protection 2008, 2012, 2016, 2018
  • Erie House
  • Kids in Need of Defense

Professional Associations

  • Women’s Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar, Litigation Section
  • District of Columbia Bar, ADR Section

Civic Activities

  • District of Columbia Bar – Lawyer Assistance Committee
  • New York Avenue Presbyterian Church – Community Club Tutoring
  • Mount Vernon Leadership Fellows – Mentor

Firm Leadership

  • Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP  Associates Committee; Public Interest Committee; D.C. Pro Bono Committee; Women’s Committee


  • Faegre Drinker — Pro Bono Honor Roll, 2021-23
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