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New club prepares Mills for disasters

Larri Ford (ABOVE) is the contact for anyone who wants to join the club. (Fatima Sugapong)
Larri Ford (ABOVE) is the contact for anyone who wants to join the club. (Fatima Sugapong)

A new club this semester could help prepare the Mills College community for disasters such as earthquakes, fires—and even a zombie attack.

The idea for the Zombie Apocalypse Preparatory Academy club started when a few friends were talking at the Tea Shop last semester and the conversation turned toward a possible zombie apocalypse.

“Is anybody really ready for the zombie apocalypse?” one friend asked.

That got the group thinking that no one would really be prepared for a scenario as disastrous as zombies trying to take over, or other catastrophic disasters for that matter.

This led one member of the group, now president of the club, sophomore Niac Muhammad, to start a club that would help prepare students for disasters. By the next day, he had secured an adviser Mark Henderson, program head of environmental studies, and had the necessary forms filled out to become a club. Soon, the Zombie Apocalypse Prepatory Academy was born.

Junior Larri Ford is the Vice President and head of publicity for the club.

“It really should be called the Zombie Apocalypse Prepatory Academy and Natural Disaster Club,” Ford said. “It’s about helping everyone learn about what to do in natural disasters and finding people who can teach about natural disasters.”

 A club with a similar idea of preparing for natural disasters tried to get started a while ago but did not get established because of a lack of interest from students. Larri explained that people will want to help Mills prepare for disasters if they see a need, but that they also will want a club that is fun and appealing. Now with the zombie spin, the idea was able to gain some momentum.

Focusing the club around a zombie theme has raised some issues. Mills does not allow fake guns, or talk about killing people, so ZAPA cannot hold any “zombie wars,” fake fights, or discuss topics about killing (even if it is the undead). So, to attain approval to be a club from the Office of Student Activities, Muhammad had to be sure not to overdo their zombie theme past anything that would upset Mills’ rules. The club will regularly discuss hypothetical zombie-disastsers at Mills, and may screen zombie films later this year.

The club is currently talking to OSA and Public Safety to figure out what type of disaster preparedness events they can hold, such as earthquake or fire drills. According to Ford, once the club is more established, they will work on doing fundraisers and putting together disaster survivial kits. 

ZAPA held its first meeting of the year on Sept. 18, at which Ford said there was a “great turn out.” The club has not yet determined an official regular meeting time.

For more information on joining the Zombie Apocalypse Preparatory Academy Club, contact Larri Ford at

Contributed reporting/writing by Emily Mibach and Ari Nussbaum.