Growing up with dyslexia can lead children to feel stupid, misunderstood, or as if they don’t fit in. Jacob Blumenstein knows this well. His own transformation from a 5th-grader who tried to skip out on reading aloud in class to a 9th grader earning summa cum laude accolades led him to create KidsRead2Kids with his sister, Alana.
Now graduating from Detroit Country Day School and heading to the University of Michigan Ross School of Business in the fall, Jacob joins his sister in a special Make Meaning episode about how their startup nonprofit, completely run and led by fellow teens, supports children struggling with reading challenges.
In this Make Meaning podcast episode, Jacob and Alana talk about how their entrepreneurial parents inspire them and continue to guide their way, how having classic novels read aloud to them as children helped to develop a love of reading, and how kids relating to kids is the best way to bring understanding and compassion to students struggling to progress.
Jacob & Alana’s Permission Slips: “Find a cause that you believe in. Don’t be afraid to fight for it. Anyone can make a change. Everyone has the potential for greatness. Go wherever you dream to go.”
In this episode, Lynne, Jacob and Alana discuss:
- Abridged classic novels
- Becoming entrepreneurs
- Strategically choosing a college to empower students to build meaningful careers
- How to use your personal struggles to help others & make a difference in your community
- Graduating high school in the time of COVID-19
- How creating a business is more than just finding a great idea
Links and Resources:
- The International Dyslexia Association’s Young Adult Advocate Program
- The National Center on Improving Literacy
- Creative Child Magazine
- University of Michigan Ross School of Business
- Oberlin College
There are many ways to take one’s personal struggle and create something that helps others – hear similar stories from other Make Meaning guests! If you like this episode, you’ll also like these episodes of the Make Meaning podcast:
- Episode 70 – Elena Reads
- Episode 36 – Teens and Food with Jen Rusciano
- Episode 13 – Teen Voices with the One Earth Writing Ambassadors
- Episode 6 – Protecting the Great Lakes with Jackson Riegler
Coming up on the Make Meaning Podcast:
Next week, Lynne speaks with Kirstin Karoub, a former Your People team member, about finding purpose in volunteering. They discuss the power of volunteering to instill meaning, reveal purpose, create connections and build mutually beneficial relationships, all while making a difference. Tune in to learn more!