Smiling woman leans against wall in outdoor setting

Paige Figanbaum

Aug. 17, 2023


Paige Figanbaum (MA ‘20), a Ph.D. candidate in history at UNLV, is the recipient of a $10,000 dissertation fellowship awarded by the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi. 

She is one of 15 recipients of the highly competitive national award open to active Phi Kappa Phi members and designed to help them complete the dissertation writing stage of doctoral study. 

Figanbaum’s research examines the intersection of public, western, environmental, and Indigenous history in Nevada. She explores five Nevada interpretive sites to demonstrate the intersections of Indigenous, rural, and federal land management history.

"I was honored to receive such a prestigious award that has provided invaluable support in completing my dissertation. The Phi Kappa Phi Dissertation Fellowship offered the chance to dedicate my time to research and writing my dissertation,” Figanbaum said.

“Through its support, I have been traveling to archives throughout the summer. This has fostered my professional skills and networking opportunities that will move beyond my time here at UNLV. "

Founded in 1897, Phi Kappa Phi is the nation's oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. The society annually inducts about 25,000 students, faculty, professional staff, and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction. Only the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students and 7.5 percent of juniors are invited to join.

Figanbaum was inducted into UNLV's Phi Kappa Phi Chapter 100 in 2022 as a doctoral student. The chapter is consistently recognized as one of the best in the country and received Circle of Excellence Platinum Chapter status for 2022-23.