‘Zombie uprising’ subject of UHV Community of Readers talk

So what should someone do when faced with an onslaught of the undead?

That will be the subject of the first in a series of talks for the University of Houston-Victoria Community of Readers from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday in the Alcorn Auditorium of UHV University West, 3007 N. Ben Wilson St.

The talk, titled “Are You Ready for the Zombie Uprising?”, will feature Jeb Lacey, emergency management coordinator for Victoria city and county. Lacey will describe the preparations that must take place in order to avoid a disaster, fictional or not.

“Preparedness is a universal idea, so if you are prepared for a worst-case scenario, you can be prepared for anything,” Lacey said. “I’ll talk about steps for preparing for an epidemic of zombies and correlate that with real-world applications.”

The series of talks are based on the Community of Readers common reading program book for the 2011-2012 school year. “World War Z,” by Max Brooks, takes a fictional and fantastical look at how world governments cope or fail when confronted by a zombie pandemic. The story also is one of determination, ingenuity and hope.

The book is available for purchase at local and online retailers, and copies are available to check out at the Victoria College/UHV Library and the Victoria Public Library. All UHV freshmen have received a copy.

“World War Z” has sold more than 1 million copies worldwide.

“We chose this book because it addresses aspects of science, sociology and psychology behind the zombie story line,” said Uppinder Mehan, interim chair of the UHV School of Arts & Sciences Humanities Division, and a Community of Readers committee member. “It also addresses East-West and North-South geopolitical relations, so we’ll cover many areas of study this year.”

The book is done in an interview-style format with people who have survived the zombie warfare.

The 2010-2011 Community of Readers book was Erik Larson’s “Isaac’s Storm,” a book about the 1900 Galveston Hurricane, and its series of talks featured takes on media coverage, and the historical and biological effects of the storm.

For more information about the Community of Readers, visit or email Committee members are UHV faculty and staff members Mehan, Casey Akins, Libby Rhoades, Dmitri Sobolev, Alireza Tavakkoli and Esperanza Camargo.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Ken Cooke 361-570-4342