I'm a stand-up comic who's been on Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing and the Tonight Show. I've toured almost 300 colleges and I was recently named one of LA Weekly's "Top 10 Comedy Acts to Watch" and one of Funny or Die's "30 Comedians to Watch Under 30." Currently I'm working as a segment producer on MTV's Ridiculousness.

 

How to Perform at Colleges

A lot of comedians ask me how to get into the college game, so I’m going to make it nice and easy. 

The easiest way to get into the college game is by showcasing at a conference called NACA (National Association of Campus Activities).   There are 6 regional showcases (Mid-America, South, Central, Northern Plains, Northeast and Mid-Atlantic) and then one national showcase every year.  Basically you have to be selected (based on your 3-5 min video) to the showcase.  Then you perform with a bunch of other entertainers (musicians, lecturers, magicians, etc).  The audience is composed of all the various college activities boards of colleges in that region.  So they decide who they like and book you to come to campus.  Just being selected to perform on a NACA is very difficult.  And submitting cost money.

You can either submit yourself or go through an agency.  All the college entertainment agencies make it clear on their websites how new potential clients can submit.  They always want the same video they’d send to NACA, so send them all a 3-5 tape cut together with your absolute best material.  Put the best stuff up front because the people making the selections for NACA are going to not finish watching most of the videos - they’re looking at thousands of them.  The main college agencies you’d want to submit to are:
The College Agency, Neon Entertainment, KP Comedy (Kirkland Productions), Joey Edmonds, Sophie K, Bass Schuler, Auburn Moon, H2F, Admire Entertainment, Cutting Edge Entertainment, GG Greg Agency, Summit Entertainment, BE Colleges.   If you end up with multiple college agencies wanting to represent you, I’d chose the one who seems the most personable and who doesn’t have other clients on the roster that fit your same description.  The best time to submit to agencies is around April because they’ll be submitting to NACAs over the summer.
All agencies will take a 20% cut of your gigs.   But I’d recommend going with an agency if you’re new to NACA.  Until you’ve seen at least one NACA, you don’t know what to expect.
To submit yourself, you have to buy a self-representation membership, which cost around $235.   Information on how to represent yourself is here:
You don’t necessarily need to go through NACAs to do college gigs, it just makes it easier.   But you can also just start going to as many college’s websites as possible, and looking up the email info for their “student activities board” or “student activities council” or “campus activities board”.  Email them that you’d like to perform and can offer them a discount.
Good luck!