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BROCK, C.J. After a jury trial in Superior Court (Smukler, J.), thedefendants, Plymouth State College (PSC) and the University System of New Hampshire,appeal from a verdict in favor of the plaintiff, Tracy Schneider, for injuries shesuffered while she was a student as a result of sexual harassment by a former PSCprofessor. We affirm in part and remand in part. The plaintiff enrolled at PSC in the fall of 1987 as an eighteen-year-oldfreshman. During her sophomore year, she enrolled in a graphic design course taught byProfessor Leroy Young. The plaintiff enjoyed the course and found Professor Youngmotivating and encouraging. After having a second positive experience in another coursewith Professor Young the following year, the plaintiff decided to major in graphic design.Professor Young was PSC’s only graphic design professor, and he became the plaintiff’sacademic advisor. The defendants do not dispute that in the summer of 1990, Professor Youngbegan a pattern of sexual harassment and intimidation of the plaintiff. Young’s behaviorincluded pressuring the plaintiff to accompany him on trips to various locations offcampus, kissing her, sending her flowers, taking off her shirt, and placing her hand onhis genitalia. Young’s conduct escalated to the point that in January 1991, he completelydisrobed in his office while the plaintiff was working on his computer. When the plaintiff attempted to rebuff Professor Young’s advances, hewould become angry, yell at her, and threaten to make her life very difficult. Youngwithheld academic support for her academic work and ridiculed her in front of faculty. Healso gave the plaintiff a grade of “C-” for her work as an intern at a graphicdesign company without ever consulting with her supervisor at the company. In two papers submitted in courses at PSC, the plaintiff revealed tofaculty members that she was being sexually harassed. The plaintiff submitted to ProfessorJosephine Hayslip a journal entry describing the sexual harassment to which a PSCprofessor had subjected her. Hayslip reported to Sally Boland, the acting dean of thecollege, that a student was being sexually harassed by someone in the art department.Hayslip testified that Boland told her that she could not do anything unless the plaintiffcame to her. The plaintiff also related the sexual harassment in a paper submitted toProfessor Wendy Palmquist in the spring of 1993. The plaintiff testified that ProfessorPalmquist took no action in response. The plaintiff told several friends and fellow students about ProfessorYoung’s conduct. In the spring of 1991, one of these students reported Young’s conduct toPSC Professor Susan Tucker, although she did not identify the plaintiff. Professor Tuckerasked the student to encourage the plaintiff to speak with her directly, and said that shewould help the plaintiff report Young’s conduct to the administration. Because theplaintiff did not come forward, Tucker did not report the allegations to PSCadministrators. In the fall of 1992, the plaintiff personally described Professor Young’sharassment in detail to Professor Annette Mitchell. The plaintiff insisted that she remainanonymous because she feared Professor Young. She did agree, however, to consider comingforward if Mitchell organized other students who were also being harassed to report theirexperiences as a group. In the spring of 1993, Professor Mitchell told Robert Morton, the chair ofthe art department, that a student who wished to remain anonymous had “aproblem” with a professor and did not want to come forward. The plaintiff refused toreport Young’s conduct to Morton because in 1992 he told her that she “look[ed] oldenough to have affairs with married men.” Also in 1993, after more students had told Professor Tucker that ProfessorYoung was sexually harassing a student, who still refused to be named, Tucker, Mitchell,and another professor reported the allegations to PSC’s Interim President, Dean TheaKalikow. Kalikow stated that she could do nothing without a firsthand account of theharassment. The plaintiff graduated from PSC in the spring of 1993. After learningthat two other students had asserted sexual harassment complaints against Professor Young,the plaintiff wrote to Dean Kalikow on October 7, 1993, complaining that Professor Younghad sexually harassed her while she was a student at PSC. On March 25, 1994, PSC dismissedProfessor Young on the grounds of moral delinquency due to his sexual harassment of theplaintiff. On May 28, 1995, the plaintiff filed a seven-count writ against thedefendants asserting liability under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20U.S.C. � 1681(a) (1994) (Title IX), and various State law theories, including breach offiduciary duty and negligent training and supervision. At the conclusion of her case, theplaintiff voluntarily dismissed all State law claims except the fiduciary duty andnegligent training and supervision claims. The remaining State law and Title IX claimswere submitted to the jury. The defendants moved for a directed verdict on the fiduciaryduty claim. The trial court denied the defendants’ motion. The jury returned a verdict infavor of the plaintiff on the Title IX claims and the fiduciary duty claim, and in favorof the defendants on the negligent training and supervision claim. The jury awarded theplaintiff $100,000 in compensatory damages and $15,000 in enhanced compensatory damages.The trial court awarded the plaintiff prejudgment interest based on her State law claim ofbreach of fiduciary duty, and attorney’s fees and costs pursuant to 42 U.S.C. � 1988(b)(1994 & Supp. 1997) for her Title IX claims. This appeal followed. On appeal, the defendants argue that the trial court erred in: (1) denyingtheir motion for a directed verdict on the fiduciary duty claim; (2) failing to give averdict form as proposed by the defendants which would have allowed the jury to makespecific findings regarding the plaintiff’s claims and the damages to be awarded; (3)applying incorrect legal standards to the Title IX claims; (4) allowing the jury to awardenhanced compensatory damages; and (5) awarding the plaintiff prejudgment interest. Weconsider each issue in turn. I. State Law Claim of Breach of Fiduciary Duty The defendants argue that the trial court erred as a matter of law indenying their motion for a directed verdict on the plaintiff’s claim of breach offiduciary duty because no fiduciary relationship exists between post-secondary educationalinstitutions and their students under New Hampshire law, and because the plaintiff failedto introduce any expert testimony regarding the nature and scope of a fiduciary duty. Thefirst ground for appeal presents an issue of first impression. Whether a duty can be imposed upon an entity for the care and protectionof a person is a question of law. See Walls v. Oxford Management Co., 137N.H. 653, 656, 633 A.2d 103, 104 (1993). We review questions of law de novo.Crown Paper Co. v. City of Berlin, 142 N.H. 563, 566, 703 A.2d 1387, 1389 (1997). “A fiduciary relationship has been defined as a comprehensive termand exists wherever influence has been acquired and abused or confidence has been reposedand betrayed.” Lash v. Cheshire County Savings Bank, 124 N.H. 435, 438, 474A.2d 980, 981 (1984) (quotation and brackets omitted).
A fiduciary relation does not depend upon some technical relation created by, or defined in, law. It may exist under a variety of circumstances, and does exist in cases where there has been a special confidence reposed in one who, in equity and good conscience, is bound to act in good faith and with due regard to the interests of the one reposing the confidence.

Id. at 439, 474 A.2d at 982 (quotation omitted). The party reposingconfidence becomes dependent on the fiduciary because he or she must rely on the fiduciaryfor a particular service. See Frankel, Fiduciary Law, 71 Cal. L. Rev. 795,800 (1983). In the context of sexual harassment by faculty members, the relationshipbetween a post-secondary institution and its students is a fiduciary one. Cf.Schneider, Sexual Harassment and Higher Education, 65 Tex. L. Rev. 525, 552 (1987).Students are in a vulnerable situation because “the power differential betweenfaculty and students . . . makes it difficult for [students] to refuse unwelcome advancesand also provides the basis for negative sanctions against those who do refuse.”Bogart & Stein, Breaking the Silence: Sexual Harassment in Education, 64Peabody J. Educ. 146, 157 (1987); cf. M. Paludi, Sexual Harassment on CollegeCampuses: Abusing the Ivory Power 85-87 (1990) (discussing student-professor powerdifferential and role in sexual harassment). When the plaintiff enrolled at PSC, she became dependent on the defendantsfor her education, thereby requiring them “to act in good faith and with dueregard” for her interests. Lash, 124 N.H. at 439, 474 A.2d at 982. Therelationship between students and those that teach them is built on a professionalrelationship of trust and deference, rarely seen outside the academic community. As aresult, we conclude that this relationship gives rise to a fiduciary duty on behalf of thedefendants to create an environment in which the plaintiff could pursue her education freefrom sexual harassment by faculty members. It would be prudent for educational institutions “to adopt andenforce practices that will minimize the danger that vulnerable students will be exposedto [sexual harassment].” Gebser v. Lago Vista Independent School Dist., 524U.S. 274, 300 (1998) (Stevens, J., dissenting). “A well-designed and implementedgrievance procedure will deal effectively with faculty misconduct, provide an accessibleand fair forum for student complaints, and promote the creation of an environment in whichsexual harassment is not tolerated.” Schneider, supra at 574. Finally, our conclusion that a fiduciary relationship existed between thedefendants and the plaintiff does not rest on the in loco parentisdoctrine. In Marquay v. Eno, 139 N.H. 708, 717-18, 662 A.2d 272, 279 (1995), weheld that a special relationship exists between primary and secondary schools and theirstudents, and that that relationship imposes a duty of care upon schools to protectstudents who they know or should know are being sexually abused by school employees. Webased our conclusion in part on the role of schools as parental proxies over minorstudents. See id. at 717, 662 A.2d at 279. In contrast, the fiduciaryrelationship in this case rests on the unique relationship described above. We also reject the defendants’ argument that the trial court erred indenying their motion for a directed verdict because she failed to introduce experttestimony regarding the nature and scope of a fiduciary duty. “Our standard of review of a trial court’s denial of motions fordirected verdict . . . is extremely narrow.” Weldy v. Town of Kingston, 128N.H. 325, 330, 514 A.2d 1257, 1260 (1986). We will uphold the trial court’s decision”where sufficient evidence in the record supports the trial court’s ruling. A partyis entitled to a directed verdict only when the movant’s case is the sole reasonableinference from undisputed facts, and the non-movant’s claim is completely withoutmerit.” Id. (citation and quotation omitted). The party bearing the burden of proof must introduce expert testimony”if the subject matter in dispute is beyond the general understanding of ajury.” State v. Hungerford, 142 N.H. 110, 120, 697 A.2d 916, 921 (1997).

Further, expert testimony is required when the issues in a case are particularly esoteric or when the matter to be determined by the trier of fact is so distinctly related to a particular science, occupation, business, or profession that it is beyond the ability of the average layperson to understand.

Id. at 120, 697 A.2d at 921-22. We conclude that the plaintiff did not need to introduce expert testimonyto meet her burden of proof. In its jury charge, the trial court explained that “[a]fiduciary relationship exists whenever special confidence has been placed inanother,” and that “[a] breach of a fiduciary relationship results wheneverinfluence has been acquired and abused or confidence has been reposed and betrayed.”These concepts are not beyond the ability of the average layperson to understand. Seeid. at 120, 697 A.2d at 921. Therefore, the trial court properly denied thedefendants’ motion for a directed verdict. II. Verdict Form The defendants next argue that the trial court abused its discretion byfailing to use their proposed verdict form. They state that the verdict form used by thetrial court makes it impossible to determine what percentages of the $100,000 compensatorydamage award are attributable to the Title IX and fiduciary duty claims, respectively. This argument was not preserved because the defendants did not request aspecial verdict on damages. See Snow v. American Morgan Horse Assoc., 141N.H. 467, 472, 686 A.2d 1168, 1172 (1996) (issue not preserved at trial waived on appeal).In fact, the verdict form used by the trial court mirrors the defendants’ proposed verdictform in asking the jury for a general verdict on the amount of compensatory damages thatthe plaintiff should receive. Accordingly, we reject this argument. III. Title IX Claims The defendants argue that the trial court made several errors with respectto the plaintiff’s Title IX claims, including that the trial court erred in applying astandard of strict liability to the plaintiff’s claim of quid pro quosexual harassment and a standard of constructive notice/negligence to her claim of”hostile environment” sexual harassment. The plaintiff concedes that the trialcourt applied incorrect legal standards. She argues, however, that the defendants are notentitled to judgment as a matter of law and that the Title IX claims should be remanded. We need not reach these issues, however, because the defendants did notrequest a special verdict on damages and because we affirm the jury’s verdict on thefiduciary duty claim. 5 Am. Jur. 2d Appellate Review � 830 (1995). In view of statements made by plaintiff’s counsel at oral argument and theresult reached on appeal, we do not address issues related to the Title IX claims andremand for such future proceedings as may be deemed appropriate. IV. Award of Enhanced Compensatory Damages The defendants argue that the trial court erred in allowing the jury toaward enhanced compensatory damages for the plaintiff’s claim of breach of fiduciary duty.”The test for determining whether an erroneous civil jury charge is reversible erroris whether the jury could have been misled.” Broderick v.Watts, 136 N.H. 153, 164, 614 A.2d 600, 607 (1992) (quotation omitted). The trial court correctly instructed the jury that it could award enhancedcompensatory damages only if it found that the defendants’ conduct was wanton, malicious,or oppressive. See Panas v. Harakis & K-Mart Corp., 129 N.H. 591, 608,529 A.2d 976, 986 (1987). Further, the trial court stated that the jury could awardenhanced compensatory damages only on the plaintiff’s claims of negligence and breach offiduciary duty, and not on the Title IX claims. These instructions were clear. They couldnot have misled the jury and, therefore, were not erroneous. See Broderick,136 N.H. at 164, 614 A.2d at 607. The defendants also argue that there was insufficient evidence to supportan award of enhanced compensatory damages. “In reviewing damages awards, we willconsider the evidence in the light most favorable to the prevailing party, and we will notdisturb the decision of the factfinder unless it is clearly erroneous.” GreatLakes Aircraft Co. v. City of Claremont, 135 N.H. 270, 295, 608 A.2d 840, 856 (1992). The jury’s determination that the defendants’ conduct was wanton oroppressive was supported by the defendants’ failure to investigate promptly and vigorouslythe allegations of Professor Young’s conduct that were reported to PSC professors andadministrators. See Panas, 129 N.H. at 608, 529 A.2d at 986. Therefore, theaward of enhanced compensatory damages was not clearly erroneous. See GreatLakes Aircraft Co., 135 N.H. at 295, 608 A.2d at 856. V. Award of Prejudgment Interest The defendants’ final argument is that the trial court erred in awardingthe plaintiff prejudgment interest based on her recovery on the fiduciary duty claim. The defendants argue that because the plaintiff received a general verdicton damages and then sought to recover her costs and attorney’s fees with respect to herTitle IX claims, she waived her right to recover prejudgment interest under State law.This argument is without merit. New Hampshire law provides for prejudgment interest to be awarded in”civil proceedings at law . . . in which a verdict is rendered or a finding is madefor pecuniary damages to any party.” RSA 524:1-b (1997). RSA 524:1-b does not limitthe award to situations in which the verdict is based only on a State law claim.Therefore, there is no reason why a plaintiff who obtains verdicts on both State andfederal claims and seeks to recover attorney’s fees pursuant to a federal statute may notseek prejudgment interest on the award of damages for the State law claim. Doing so wouldnot result in a double recovery. Accordingly, we conclude that the trial court properlyawarded the plaintiff prejudgment interest on the award of damages for her fiduciary dutyclaim. In sum, we affirm the trial court’s decisions to deny the defendants’motion for a directed verdict on the plaintiff’s fiduciary duty claim, to permit the juryto award enhanced compensatory damages, and to award the plaintiff prejudgment interest.We remand issues relating to the Title IX claims. Affirmed in part; remanded in part. BRODERICK, J., did not sit; THAYER, J., sat but did not participate in thedecision; the others concurred.


THE SUPREME COURT OF NEW HAMPSHIRE Merrimack No. 97-585 TRACY SCHNEIDER v. PLYMOUTH STATE COLLEGE & a. December 16, 1999 Douglas, Robinson, Leonard & Garvey, P.C., of Concord (CharlesG. Douglas, III and Susanna G. Robinson on the brief, and Mr. Douglasorally), for the plaintiff. Devine, Millimet & Branch, P.A., of Manchester (Joseph M.McDonough, III and Dyana J. Crahan on the brief, and Mr. McDonoughorally), for the defendants.
 
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