A private educational institution, such as a private college or university, has a contractual relationship to its students, opening the doors for students to sue if that contract is breached, the Superior Court has ruled in a case of first impression.

But that decision didn’t result in a victory for the graduate student whose suit presented the issue: the court also ruled that Lehigh University did not breach its contract with the student when it declined to award her a Ph.D. in industrial engineering.

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