Ask-the-Students: Who’s Ready for the Zombie Apocalypse?

Image: © geralt, Pixabay License, Source.

MUSE asked students to anonymously submit their opinions on which UNIL faculty or department is most likely to survive a zombie apocalypse. Here are the answers we got from them and I can tell you that there are great ones ! Enjoy! (And maybe you should think about it too… Just in case…)


The med students’ ego alone would help them last a while. They would survive on sheer self-confidence lol


The students in Cinema, they’ve probably seen all kinds of zombie movies tbh, so they’re definitely prepared. In second place I would put the students in the Faculty of Biology and Medicine, maybe they can come up with some sort of cure? Also, maybe people in Linguistics could find a way to communicate with the zombies! (I think I might be going a bit far) I would also like to add the honorable mentions of who would NOT survive the zombie apocalypse: students in Law and Criminal Justice (do I need to explain?), and students in the History department (I’m not sure how knowing about old coins, texts and buildings is going to help them). However, and this is my conclusion, I think that if students in Arts were stuck in the Anthropole during the apocalypse, you’d just find them chilling in the cafeteria with a coffee :)


As a new Faculty of Arts student, I don’t know a lot about other faculties, but I do believe the ones with a better chance of survival would be the ones with the building that can be more easily turned into a survivalist bunker. That being said, the Anthropole would be the first to fall, too many entries, too long to create a flanking team, too many windows that can easily break. The winner would then be the Biophore (and therefore what I suppose is the biology faculty). The square building is easy to patrol around, the scaffolding like structure is perfect for high ground defence, not that many entrances AND they have all the equipment (and hopefully knowledge) to study the happenings. They would just need to put their adversities apart and try to organize a perfect equalitarian anarchistic community where each one could use their talents for the best. That’s my bet.


I would say the Philosophy section, if these guys are not afraid of Kant then what a few zombies could do against them ?
Also, have you ever read Hegel ? Anyone who has the dedication to try for hours to understand his writings must have the patience and resources to find food and shelter through the apocalypse as well as the meaning of life…


  • Med school students are already quite similar to zombies so they wouldn’t really perceive any difference
  • Biology students would probably attempt some shady experiment on a few captured zombies in an attempt to identify the cause. Plot twist : it doesn’t end well for them.
  • HEC students would be too drunk to fight back and gradually succumb to the plague. Maybe organize regular burials for their fallen comrades during which they would party even harder.
  • Students from the Faculty of Forensic Science would react quickly to the plague and organize a bastion of resistance hand in hand with the students from the faculty of social and political sciences, the students from the department of theology and the ones from Law school. With time, different enemy factions emerge within the bastion based on the students’ self-assigned Hogwarts houses and a civil war breaks out, causing them to retire into separate headquarters from which they lead a war against each other while defending themselves from the tides of zombies harassing them.
  • While engaged in the civil war, known by many as “The Sorry Chasm of the Dorigny Faculties”, the survivors from the Faculty of Theology develop their own cult which is centered around the worshiping of comparative linguistics between languages, the consumption of mate beverages, and insomnia. The other faculties quickly catch up on this new religion.
  • Students from the Letters faculty initially get lost within the maze of Dorigny buildings (rendered even more confusing and twisted by the end of the world raging everywhere). After a while, some of them appear as wise hermits who mysteriously roam within the ruins of the academic campus in a search for existential purpose. Other students refer to them as “bookworms” and look at their frenzied peers with a mix of curiosity, awe, and distrust.
  • It is rumored that Unil had a faculty of geosciences prior to the apocalypse, yet most would ditch this assertion as a mere urban myth.
  • Although leading the resistance against zombies at the onset of the apocalypse, what happened to Unil teachers after the “Reprography incident” is anybody’s guess, really…


The biathletes. Cardio to run. Skills to shoot.


Benjamin Pickford. He apparently does a lot of cycling and could ride away quickly into the mountains.


Boris Vejdovsky. He would start lecturing and hold the zombies enthralled.


Anyone with a lockable office door… for a while….


Cinema students, obviously. I mean, most of us are prepared for any type of scenario (+ as most of cinema students have terrible daddy issues with Pedro Pascal, you can be sure that we’ll be ready in case of a ‘Last of Us’ type of apocalypse)


Lettres, ’cause they would barricade themselves in Anthropole using books… they might as well be useful for something !


I think the Archaeology students could have a very strong potential! Indeed, their sharp little tools could be used as deadly weapons. In the same way, the habit of some history of art teachers to stick a knife in the heart of their students for not being good enough could turn to their advantage in such a situation. And let’s not forget theatre students who would be able to make great zombie impressions and, thus, be accepted as part of them.


*Language errors have been edited for clarity

The Velvet Seats

Image: © igorovsyannykov, Pixabay License, Source.

Author: Iris Low

Was it all a lie? How could it be since I saw and felt what you were too scared to utter? I’m not insane, I was there. I saw the way you looked at me, the way you longed for me. I felt the way you kissed me as though you couldn’t get enough of me, and I saw the huge smile your lips formed every time they parted from mine. I felt the delicate and precise way you touched me in circular and repetitive motions on every part of my body, as though you were trying to mentally scan in your memory every inch of my body, in its exact shape, size, and texture. I heard the vulnerable tremble in your voice, and I listened to your authentic confessions. I can still see, hear, and feel it all, as if it were still happening right now, before my own eyes. 

It is our motion picture, only I don’t feel like the protagonist anymore. I feel like the ghost dwelling amongst the spectators, trapped within the velvet seats, unable to dive back into the silver screen.


Image: © John_Nature_Photos, Pixabay License, Source.

Author: Iris Low

How lifeless do the small train stations here seem. With all the streetlights’ trembling glow, one would think to cross a face nearby. But there isn’t any. Not a soul. 

I can hear some cars driving by at a distance as they slowly fade away in dissonance with the crickets’ orchestra from the trees and bushes nearby. Funny how cold this place feels in the middle of summer. I feel swallowed in the deadening noises from afar, which sound so peaceful, regardless of their loneliness. And every now and then a train rushes by, but never stops. It is full of lights and full of life. Everything seems to rush by me these days and I never seem able to catch up. Just like those trains. Everything seems to go by, without ever stopping for me. That is how disconnected I feel about everything going on around me. Everyone is walking by and going about their day, and their life, while I feel stuck in the mud they stomp their feet on.

I know you were the one who always asked questions, but I wonder, how many people, do you think, have bid each other farewell on this gloomy platform? Was it a tearful one? Or was it dry? And how many people have reunited here? What did it feel like? Did they feel a rush down their spine when they embraced again? How long did they have to wait?

How long will I have to wait? You are leaving within a week. In four days we’ll be sharing our last goodbye on some other dark, cold, and lonely platform. Will you feel as shattered as I will? Do you even feel anything for me anymore? Anything at all? Or has my meaningless existence descended within the shrieking silence of your disinterest? I feel as though your affections for me have rushed by me like those trains, long, long ago. How could you have left me here? Was there no room left on the train for me? Or are you lingering on another forgotten platform too? 

Where can I find you? 

Which train must I take to reach you? 

I’ll take any train, any one that will lead me back to your arms. I miss their warmth. I miss feeling your fingertips on my back. Do you miss feeling your lips touching mine too? I miss your fragrance and I miss the soft timbre of your voice. I miss how young you made me feel. 

I miss dancing with you at the lake next to the ducks, like two children in love. In messy, really messy love. Two messy children in messy love. ‘Love’ or, ‘little white lie’, whatever you may call it. 

I miss listening to your heart drumming through your chest all the way to my ear; to my heart; to the very depths of my fragmented soul. Or whatever is left of it, I suppose.

I hope one day we’ll meet again. On the platform where souls intertwine, and sunflowers flourish in winter; under the moon’s crystal gaze.

Of Shattered Stars

Image: © DanaTentis, Pixabay License, Source.

Author: Iris Low

And while my skin slowly soaks in the filth of my fragile human existence, my mind wanders off back to the night you ran your fingers across my body and through my hair, while telling me about the human race being nothing more but a mere creation of broken stars. That human life and bodies are so utterly meaningless, that they are nothing more but conjured up atoms from the remains of ancient stardust. Perhaps we aren’t even the stardust’s essence but most likely the dust blown off of it instead. Ironic how within this discourse of the pathetic status of my existence did I finally find some comfort within the unease I feel every morning when my body awakes, and I realize I am still alive. Perhaps it is natural for us to feel constant pain since we appear to be, at the end of the day, nothing more than shattered stars. We are the remains of some light gone out long, way too long ago, and somehow, it is this poetic meaninglessness of my existence that gives me the will to keep on living.

from The Truth

Image: © by Andres Stadelmann

Author: Andres Stadelmann

It was late August when I realized my Nonno was going to die
He had relapsed heavily
Never left unattended
And although we had not seen him for weeks
It was there, at the beach, that I crawled into my parents’ bed and cried with them
I was 11.
A week later we were back home with him
He barely inched out of his room
Limping towards the bathroom
And I, stuck, watching from the hallway
An image framed from a movie
(I’m still stuck there to this day)
The day he felt better we were told it was time to say goodbye
And we did
But the next day
Standing up on the toilet bowl
(My father had lifted me up
To hug me while he cried)
I started to imagine something special had happened during that last farewell
A final stroke on the cheek
A soft smile

It was only years later
When I saw him holding his own father’s hand
while we each took our turns in that room
He looked at me knowingly while I sobbed
And held the old man while he died
(He didn’t cry at the funeral)
It was there that I realized that it wasn’t a physical sign,
something we could hold on to
But that the dead always call out for us before they’ve died
They know nothing will fill that void
So they just tell us

Every day that passes I look more like my father
This thing, I have struggled against it a lot
I’ve wanted to tear it away from me
Yet it’s always there
It comes out in spurts
Fierce and without warning
And then it stays
It marks me forever
And this thing consumes me
It erases years
Or rather it adds them
I think of that middle-aged man
Of all that he lived through
Of the sweat he shed
The blood
The semen
But for what?
And for whom?
I feel like I’ve already lived enough to be able to understand it
But not even cigarettes
Or fucking beer
Don’t change the facts
We have the same body
Made to renounce everything
To vent without regard
An anger that makes you sweat
And that child
I erased his name

But it’s always children who know how to speak the truth
Like those clouds suspended in bursts in the blue sky
While the lightning behind thunders in silence

Société Anonyme

Author: Andres Stadelmann

There are many bridges in Paris
Rive gauche
Rive droite
But once you’re on them
On which side do you fall?
Towards the muck and towards the grass
Where they write out your name
Or perhaps to the decks
Where they punch the ground below
And to all those sleepers
Without pillows
Without dreams
Did you spill your old bottle caps
Did you use them as your dirt?

On the river two boats joust
While in the capital their anthem is screamed
And we looked as they streamed
Sometimes blue
Only green
But the little girl watched
As I took down their flag
And her uncles waddled away with their teeth all in flaps
Those old men know not to trust shady cameras
Yet for fame
Yet for glory
We could not keep our coats
But for love

The bridges in Paris cradle cars and lights
From the cold
From the rain
And in a small pint bar
We sit and rehearse
How to stumble and be still
But never to cry

I’m sad again
But that’s ok

The Lines

Author: RKC

Tomorrow I will write the lines
Write the lines that are perfect like a bullet in the afternoon
Lines to feed the air and keep me sane
To burn like a cigarette at the end of the day

Old lines have lost their taste
Been lost in my longings along with my memories

It’s only normal then,
That I should save myself
and pour me whole,
In empty scotch bottles and blank sheets of paper

Read my soul in these old lines
As I find my enemies
In these old bones


Author: RKC

The legs of a woman shouldn’t be pretty
How could they?
With all the burden of immoral and evil acts they have encountered and suffered?
With what they’ve seen and lived?
They shouldn’t have to carry all the weight they do
Their smiles shouldn’t still burn white
They have seen the worst of us and still take us to their heavens
They still believe in us
They shouldn’t make us better
They shouldn’t have to
They shouldn’t

And yet they do,