Rebel In Action: Fawn Douglas '15
Founding President of the UNLV Native American Alumni Club, Fawn Douglas
Fawn Douglas came to UNLV determined to make a change. She witnessed a shortage of Native American representation and cultural awareness; along with a disregard of the history of Indigenous people, which caused her to feel marginalized. Despite her initial tribulations and objections to the school’s mascot, which Fawn views as a symbol of Indian removal, she was able to see that UNLV had much more to offer. As a student, this was highlighted in 2015 while giving a public forum on Christopher Columbus with the Native American Student Association. The students’ reception and interest in the message really moved her. Douglas says, “It is not a mascot, a cartoon figure, but the living breathing people that make UNLV an amazing institution.”
She has also witnessed the students’ hunger for different perspectives in her professional teaching experience. Fawn taught at the College of Liberal Arts for the American Indian Indigenous Studies Introduction course for 2 years and was able to have a front-row seat to the students’ willingness to have an open dialogue about race, class, and gender. Through her art, she is able to let her words project visually. She contends her main drive to pursue her MFA at UNLV is the relationship with the campus community.
Fawn chooses to be a Rebel in Action so she can be a voice for her community. She is proud to be a part of the diversifying process and will continue to advocate for Indigenous culture in any way she can. Although the new Indigenous Studies minor is a great start, she believes that there is still a lack of awareness and understanding that exists around the culture she identifies with, the Nuwuvi-Southern Paiute. Fawn strives to create lasting change in order to instill long-term progress for Indigenous Americans. She values UNLV students and their education. “To be part of the movement for a daring, diverse, and different University is something to be proud of“, says Douglas.
Fawn has been a working artist since receiving her BA in Painting and Drawing in 2015 and is the founding President of the UNLV Native American Alumni Club. Her hope for the University is a continual increase in Native American students. Representation matters to Fawn and she looks forward to seeing the results of her efforts as she leads this new alumni group.