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The Insiders: The Rise of Sugar Daddies Paying for College Tuition

The Insiders: The Rise of Sugar Daddies Paying for College Tuition
Posted at 5:30 PM, Aug 10, 2015
and last updated 2017-12-13 05:24:32-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL)-- The sugar baby phenomenon can be a life of luxury or just another way of paying the bills with a twist.

Seekingarrangement.com released a report this year ranking Florida State University as one of the fastest growing sugar baby schools in the country. The university ranked 20 on the list with 158 new users in 2014.

The site claims it's all about mutually beneficial relationships and companionship.

The costs of college can be stressful, especially for students who don't have the financial support to pay their way through school.

It's not just tuition.

That's where online sites like seekingarrangment.com come into play.

They offer up a fast way for students, primarily women to get cash for school.

We talked to one Florida A&M University student. We also hid her face and changed her voice because she didn't want to reveal her identity, but she did want to share her sugar baby experience with us.

She says she's been on seekingarrangement.com site for about a year and a half.

"I'm usually pretty straight forward," said the sugar baby. "My profile says i'm looking for a monthly allowance."

She usually rakes in about $2,000 a month.

She says her first sugar daddy was in his 40's and single. He didn't give her an allowance, but he did buy her things.

"My laptop got stolen. My iPad got stolen. Money got stolen. He replaced all those things for me. He paid for my graduation pictures, my hair, my make-up, all that stuff."

Her next sugar daddy was a little different. He was married and so is her current one.

She says he's very generous.

"There's no pressure. It's not pay for play. You don't come over here and we have sex and you pay me $100. That's never how it works.

The sugar daddy I have now, I was talking to him three to four months before we ever had sex."

She says you have to be upfront with what you want and be selective when choosing a sugar daddy.

A spokesperson for seekingarrangement.com says there are a total of 83 registered users that are sugar babies at FAMU. There are 529 at FSU. Twelve at tallahassee community college, and 97 at Valdosta State University.

Seekingarrangement.com says the average age of the sugar babies on the site is 21-28 years old. Forty-two percent of the sugar baby membership are students.

One point four million are students. That's the largest demographic.

"The average sugar daddy is 39 years old and the majority of them are entrepreneurs or business owners or CEO's and they're looking for a different type of relationship that can fit into their busy life styles and that's why this works out so well," said Angela Jacob Bermudo, the spokesperson for seekingarrangement.com.

Some question the legality of the sites.

"The Florida statute for prostitution is very clear in the wording in the charge that goes on if something is prostitution or not," said Officer David Northway with the Tallahassee Police Department. "They do not meet the criteria of breaking the law in the state of Florida. At this time, we haven't had any complaints about these web sites."

The site claims a short term payment from a sugar daddy for something like tuition could be a long term investment into a sugar baby's future.

We reached out to Florida State University to hear their thoughts on the sugar baby site and the number the site claims are on the campus. The school didn't provide a statement. A Tallahassee Community College spokesperson said they hadn't heard about the site. 

Florida A&M University sent us this information in response: 

The University strives to empower our students with information to help them navigate through their college experience and teach them to be safe in all of their activities. The University publishes the below safety guide for students, including tips for online communities. https://www.famu.edu/PublicSafety/SAFETY%20TIPS%20v2.pdf

 We also offer safety training services year round: http://www.famu.edu/index.cfm?a=PublicSafety&p=CrimePrevention

 The University also educates students throughout the year on how they can receive funding for their education. Scholarships, grants,  and fellowships are offered to our students via many avenues and programs. Students also learn about financial aid and loan alternatives.

http://www.famu.edu/index.cfm?FinancialAid&TypesofAid

Valdosta State University sent us the following information: 

 
Basically, for an in-state student taking a 15-hour course load, which is what a student would need to take each semester (fall and spring) to graduate in four years, tuition and fees are $3,671 per semester. Books are estimated to cost about $600 per semester. For those students who live on campus, housing is an additional $2,036 and a meal plan is an additional $1,920. VSU is well below the national average in terms of tuition and fees. According the the College Board, the average cost of tuition and fees for the 2014-2015 academic year was $9,139 for state residents at public colleges; our rate comes in at about $2,000 less. The College Board also reports that the average cost of room and board for the 2014-2015 year was $9,804 at four-year public schools; again our rate comes in at about $2,000 less.  
 
To help students fund the cost of earning a college degree, Valdosta State University offers student assistantships, short-term loans, and payment plans. The university also offers a a variety of financial aid programs, including the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, the Federal Pell Grant, the Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant, the Federal Direct Subsidized Loan, the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, and the Federal Direct PLUS Loan. Private and alternative loans are available. The HOPE Scholarship is available to Georgia residents who have demonstrated academic achievement; the Zell Miller Scholarship covers 100 percent of tuition costs for high-achieveing Georgia residents. The university also awards a number of need-based and merit-based scholarships to students who represent the high standards of VSU.