Students stage zombie invasion

zombieUNlogo Zombies will invade the world this Saturday in a model UN crisis room scenario held on campus.

The Fire Starting Monkeys, a club formed to encourage political debate and historical research, is hosting the event in which an international incident turns into a zombie invasion.

According to, a company that offers Model UN training programs, a crisis room situation is “the exciting, sexy side of contemporary Model UN” with a fast-paced committee style with room to allow action by both individuals and coalitions.

Political science professor Margaret Sankey will be heading up the crisis room situation and hopes that 25 to 30 students will join in to tangle with the potential zombie apocalypse.

“An event like this, even with a made up crisis, teaches the way in which the Security Council operates, and it throws into the spotlight the different ways each country would approach a problem,” Sankey said. “In seeing this applied to something like zombies, you can also see why it is difficult for nations to work together on more realistic problems.”

It is the first event of its kind that Sankey is hosting, and she said more common historical situations are things like the Cuban Missile Crisis, or hypothetical problems, like a nuclear standoff between India and Pakistan.

A typical Model UN event is held over several days and replicates the workings of a General Assembly session. A crisis room is a four to five hour simulation of the Security Council engaging with a specific problem.

“Games and simulations like this do resemble what a United Nations crisis would look like,” political science senior Kevin Struxness said. “Every country has an agenda to protect, and it’s always interesting how people disagree with each other, even though each country’s goals are similar.”

The zombie craze has taken over pub crawls, movie theaters, television shows and Halloween parties in recent years. The prevalence of the theme even prompted the Center for Disease Control to issue a zombie preparedness plan.

The plan is contained in a graphic novel called “Preparedness 101: Zombie Pandemic” and was issued as a fun way to educate the public on emergency preparedness in any emergency. Sankey pointed out that it is good to have extra supplies on hand, know first aid, have good situational awareness, know where to get good information and have copies of important documents on hand; all things equally useful for a Fargo flood, blizzard or accident.

Sankey wouldn’t give more details on the scenario to avoid ruining the experience for the participants, but said that the event is a fundraiser for a trip to the American Model UN in Chicago in November.

“Anyone who enjoys (live action role playing scenarios), political arguments, debate or public shouting will have a good time,” Sankey said.

The invasion will begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday in Bridges. The cost is $10 and interested students can sign up by emailing Sankey at by Friday.

“It’s always a great time, and knowing Dr. Sankey, there will be multiple twists that will cause some chaos,” Struxness said.


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