I’m interested in applying!  What should I do first?

First check to see that you are eligible to apply (requirements are listed on our “Admissions” page).  Second, check with your adviser and/or the off campus study or study abroad office to confirm that the course credits from Comedy Studies will transfer to your home institution.  For some schools, your financial aid can be applied to your semester with Comedy Studies but check with the financial aid office at your home institution to make certain that is the case.

If you are a high school senior or college freshman or sophomore and you are interested in taking Comedy Studies in your junior year, we recommend that you sit down with your college adviser early to make certain that the Comedy Studies semester fits seamlessly into the rest of your college major. 

We also accept applications from recent college graduates


What if my school does not offer the prerequisite courses needed to apply?

We understand that many schools do not offer the exact courses required to apply to Comedy Studies. We will happily consider similar classes or equivalent experience from outside comedy institutions, or college teams etc. You can let us know of your equivalent experience in your theatrical resume and/ or short description. More information regarding this, can be found on our “Apply” page. With that being said, Comedy Studies is a rigorous and challenging semester, and applicants must have experience in writing or performing comedy to apply.


What if I need to know earlier than the acceptance date if I have gotten into the program?

We understand that some students may need to let their school know far in advance if they plan to attend the following semester. In this instance, and few others, we can typically accommodate requests for early notification of acceptance. 


Does Comedy Studies provide housing for students?

The program does not provide housing, so it is up to students to make their own living arrangements for the semester. While we cannot officially recommend housing arrangements, feel free to contact us with any questions, and we are happy to give you information about what has worked for students in the past. We also create a private Facebook group for accepted students, and many previous attendees have used it as a way to connect with classmates and find roommates for the term.

Any suggestions on special items that I should bring with me to Chicago?

Laptop computer and printer – most students find it more convenient to bring their own laptop and printer rather than using Columbia’s facilities. The Second City does have a free Wi-Fi connection for students through the training center facility.  If you choose not to bring a printer, there is a printer and copier available on site but you will need to convert files to PDF to make sure that your scripts and documents are in proper format.

A speaker to attach to your laptop and/or music-playing device – very useful in classroom presentations and for rehearsals.

A small stapler.

Water bottle.

Sticky socks, if you are uncomfortable working barefoot in movement class.

Show clothes – for the final showcase performances during your last week of classes, you will want to bring a set of clothes similar to what our Second City resident company performers wear as their base costume in our revues.  For men: generally a suit and tie with a solid colored shirt (a suit jacket with nice pants also works well) and dress shoes.  For women: solid colored top with a skirt or pants (that aren’t jeans or leggings) and dress shoes that you can move in (i.e. not flip flops, clogs, or insanely high heels).

Costume pieces – throughout the term you will have a variety of performance assignments, you may want to bring some costume pieces from home or budget to buy some while you are here.

Specialty pieces – if you have a talent like juggling or playing an instrument, you may want to bring along any related equipment because it could end up in your final performances.