April Van Buren

Community Engagement Director

Credit Mercedes Mejia / Michigan Radio

April Van Buren is Community Engagement Director for Michigan Radio's State of Opportunity project. She produces features and Stateside segments for the project and coordinates State of Opportunity's live events.

Before landing at Michigan Radio, April worked as a producer for Current State at WKAR where she helped launched the station's Pop-Up Stories project. She also worked as a reporting intern and producer at WBEZ in Chicago. Her very first public radio gig was as an intern here at Michigan Radio.

April graduated from Harvard University in 2012 with the most liberal artsy of liberal arts degrees. She is a die-hard 30 Rock fan and once saw Tina Fey do the chicken dance at a party.

child at desk

Question: What do Steve Jobs, Whoopi Goldberg, and Steven Spielberg have in common?

Answer: Dyslexia.

The neurologically based learning disability impacts an estimated one in five Americans. And while people with dyslexia have normal intelligence, they face significant challenges in learning how to read and write. As you might imagine, that can have a big effect on academic outcomes.

mom and four kids
April Van Buren / Michigan Radio

Foster care is supposed to be a temporary fix. When a child ends up in state care, the first goal is to reunite them with their birth families. But only about half of the 13,000 children in Michigan’s child welfare system every year end up going home. A small group of parents in Washtenaw County wants to change that.