As tuition costs sprint past the national inflation
rate, some college-bound women are finding alternative means to pay for their
Since 2008 when the recession hit, funding for public
education has declined by 14.6 percent, and funding per pupil at state
universities has fallen by 21 percent from 2000 to 2010, according to the
Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
One website, Seeking Arrangement.com, has seen its
popularity increase over the past few years. Many college-aged women turn to
the service for financial assistance. The website offers women, or “sugar
babies,” the chance to meet older men with disposable income, or “sugar
According to the website’s description, Seeking
Arrangement helps with “what you are seeking, whether it is love,
companionship, friendship or some financial help, and whether it will be for a
short-term, long-term or life-long arrangement.”
In January, Seeking Arrangement released a list of the
fastest growing “sugar baby colleges,” the universities with the fastest
growing populations of women seeking men able to assist with college tuition in
return for “companionship.” The fastest growing college on the website was
Georgia State University.
College student membership increased 58 percent overall
from December 2011 to December 2012.
Peter Munck, a history and broad field social science
major, believes that nothing is wrong with the interaction.
“This all comes down to my libertarianism. I am for
personal liberty. I am for people making contracts and other financial
decisions without government interference,” Munck said. “This includes business
transactions that happen to involve sexual services like prostitution or, in
this case, marriage, or sugar daddies, or however you want to call it for
tuition. It really doesn’t concern me, so I’m not going to get bothered by it.”
Michelle Nieuwenhuis, a theatre and English major, had
a different take on the issue.
“I am sure there are people doing it for the wrong
reasons, which upsets me only because these women are denying themselves actual
love. The economy is down, and it seems as though in order to get a good paying
job, some people find it necessary to fake relationships in order to be
successful,” Nieuwenhuis said. “Maybe society should look inwards to see why
young people are doing this.”
Nieuwenhuis and Munck also felt it should be
acknowledged that men could also be on the reverse end of the relationship.
“I just wish older women did the same,” Munck said.
Seeking Arrangement has it covered, with the option to
browse for “sugar mommies.”