Registered Student Organization Handbook

Guidelines for Working with Agents and Campus Performers/Speakers

As a student representative and not a legal representative of Grand Valley State University, you are not permitted to request a contract from the agent. Verbal requests for a contract are considered verbal agreements and commit the University to the date and price quoted by the agent. It is quite difficult to release the university from that commitment.  When you and your organization are ready to commit your group to a date and artist, you are strongly encouraged to enlist the assistance of the Office of Student Life when contacting a talent agent.

Remember that only authorized representatives of the university may make offers and sign contracts. The Associate Director and Assistant Directors in the Office of Student Life are authorized contracting and signing resources for you and your student organizations. Graduate Assistants will assist you in contract negotiations and conversations.

Please remember that you are not the only RSO on campus that works with agents. Please be kind enough to positively represent your organization and your organization colleagues by having fun while remaining professional within the university's expectations.

To better understand the obligations and commitments between universities and member agencies in the National Association of Campus Activities, please refer to the NACA Statement on Ethics found at

Agent Do's                                                                      Agent Don'ts

  • Represent GVSU in a positive manner.
  • Ask for date availability.
  • Give the venue size.
  • Talk about block booking.
  • Ask about the "going rate."
  • Check travel plans.
  • Call for riders.
  • Request publicity.
  • Leave advisor's/ OSL contact name as contact.
  • Inform your advisors and/or OSL contact that you have contacted an agent.
  • Keep a log of calls (date, time, notes).
  • Share conversations with your group.
  • Have fun!
  • Do not make an offer.
  • Do not ask for a contract.
  • Do not tell the agent your budget amount.
  • Do not provide personal contact information to the agent. Instead, provide your SOC telephone number or email address.
  • Do not be scared. Agents are our partners in putting on great events on campus.
  • Do not lose sight that the agent is doing his/her job.
  • Do not be afraid to tell the agent no. If the act or the details are not fitting into your vision, politely decline.

Contracting Do's                                                         Contracting Don'ts

  • Do talk to agents and return phone calls.
  • Do pursue talent.
  • Do ask lots of questions.
  • Do your research.
  • Do ask where else the performer has been.
  • Do ask for a contact name and number.
  • Do ask for availability.
  • Do have several dates in mind (your first choice may not be available).
  • Do ask price and what that includes.
  • Do make it clear than an authorized GVSU representative must make an offer.
  • Do keep your advisor informed.
  • Do not make an offer.
  • Do not ask for a contract.
  • Do not tell the agent your budget amount.
  • Do not agree to anything that is considered "unreasonable" in what the university should provide.

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Page last modified October 16, 2013