Dottie Myers-Hill, Camp Director
Dottie Myers-Hill, Camp Director — Hello there goobers and grownups! My name is Dottie and I am your Camp Director at VBYC. This is my 22nd summer working at Camp and I love my job so much...I used to tell people that being on staff was so fun, I felt guilty accepting a paycheck. I have worked with a bunch of different camp generations and consider myself lucky enough to have met many founding family members in my days here. I credit them with giving me the Camp spirit and the inspiration to come back and keep their original vision for the program alive so many years later. I feel very lucky to work with the young people in these photos...they teach me things every day and I am extremely grateful that they allow me to lead them and VBYC into the future. I have one "kid" in college, one a new teacher, a husband and three cats at home. In addition to my family, Camp fills my soul and keeps me grounded. Thank you for trusting me, and our staff, to look after your children...happy camping! :)
Hannah Powless, Assistant Director
Hannah Powless, Assistant Director — Hello friends! My name is Hannah and I am so excited to be returning to VBYC this summer. Camp is seriously the highlight of my year! When I'm not at camp, I work at Western Michigan University and spend my free time reading and writing children's literature. I am eager to dive back into nature and make memories with you all this summer. See you soon!
Wendy Tarantino, Office Manager
Wendy Tarantino, Office Manager — Hi! My name is Wendy and this is my 11th summer as your Office Manager at Van Buren Youth Camp. I love all the campers, the singing, the games and fun that we have out here. This has been my favorite place since I was 8 and it has barely changed at all. I LOVE IT HERE! Besides camp, I work at an elementary school and am a mom to 5 girls ages 3 - 20. My favorite things to do include taking photos, watching my girls play at the beach, attending (or being in!) musicals and travelling.
Antonio Fields, Head Counselor and Initiatives Instructor
Antonio Fields, Head Counselor and Initiatives Instructor — Hey everyone, I'm Antonio! I'm so excited to come back for my third year as a staff member after being a camper/counselor at VBYC since 2012 along with my brother, and recently, my sister as well. Even though I'm from Detroit, I happily make the drive to camp anytime I can! During the rest of the year, I attend school at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee where I major in music education, with a concentration in choral, and minor in English (yes, I can spend all day reading and will sing any song that comes onto the radio). I'm so excited to get to know every face that comes through camp this summer!
Beth Hyland, Waterfront
Beth Hyland, Waterfront — Hello! My name is Beth, this will be first summer working at VBYC. I will be working on the waterfront, I also am currently studying a law degree at Queens University Belfast, and can't wait for summer :)
Cámilo andres Morales Osorio, Dance Instructor
Cámilo andres Morales Osorio, Dance Instructor — Hello everyone, my name is Camilo Andres, I am from Colombia, my pronouns are he/him, this is my first summer working for VBYC, I am very excited to share my skills with all the people in the camp. I am a weight trainer and personal instructor and calisthenics, my mother tongue is Spanish, I am an English student and I am perfecting it, I am an urban dancer, and a Latino, I love creating choreographies and I have managed large dance groups, I love listening to music , take photos and make videos for social networks, I love meeting new people and learning from their ideas, I am a fan of personal growth, I can't wait to meet you all.
Ella Birkenshaw, Drama Instructor
Ella Birkenshaw, Drama Instructor — Hi, I'm Ella, I'm starting university in September, I'll be studying graphic design in Nottingham. I love creative subjects and science! I'm from a city called Leeds in the UK and can't wait for my first year at camp :)
Emma Pearson, Kitchen Lead
Emma Pearson, Kitchen Lead — I've been on staff for the last 2 years as kitchen and nature instructor, and I'm happy to be back for kitchen this year. I'm very excited to meet up with old and new campers alike.
Eric McKewin, Waterfront
Eric McKewin, Waterfront — Hi everyone! My name is Eric and I'm excited to be on the waterfront this summer. This is my first summer as a staff member but I've been coming to VBYC as a camper and counselor since I was 9 years old. I love camp's silly traditions, its sense of community, and of course, the campers! In my non-camp life, I'm an Environmental Studies student at Oberlin College. I like to run, crochet, and bake lots and lots of bread. I'm super excited to help make some "camp magic" this summer!
Ethan Lasseigne, Nature Instructor
Ethan Lasseigne, Nature Instructor — I’m a recent graduate of the University of Florida in mechanical engineering and sustainability studies, VBYC staff alumni, and lifelong camper looking forward to leading a new generation of campers in their nature explorations!
Evan Wahmhoff, Social Media (Remote)
Evan Wahmhoff, Social Media (Remote) — Hello all! My name is Evan Wahmhoff, my pronouns are he/him, and I've had going to camp for the past 8 years now. When I'm not at camp I love to cook and help civically engage the college students!
Jake Clifton, Riflery Instructor
Jake Clifton, Riflery Instructor — Hi, my name is Jake and this is my second summer working for VBYC and I am really excited to come back. Also, I am currently studying social work major at Northern Michigan University.
Jon Childress, Assistant Cook
Jon Childress, Assistant Cook — Hi everyone! My names Jon and I will be out at camp for my 12th season and 2nd on staff. First time in a decade being back on staff and I couldn’t be more thrilled about being back at VBYC. I currently am a fitness coach/personal trainer in Cleveland, OH. My hobbies include: movies, time at the gym, video games, poetry open mics, meditation, yoga, hikes, time at the beach and I love live music. Can’t wait to be cooking up some mean dinners and spending time making memories that’ll last a lifetime. See y’all soon! ☮️
Jordan Washington, Song Instructor
Jordan Washington, Song Instructor — Howdy howdy! My name is Jordan Washington, this is my first summer at Van Buren and my first time working at a summer camp! I studied musical theatre and technical theatre at Sante Fe College in Gainesville, Florida. I’m beyond excited for this summer and looking forward to teaching music. I enjoy mountain/trail biking, singing, playing Dnd with friends, video games and cooking. Very excited to be a part of the team!
Katie Middleton, Waterfront
Katie Middleton, Waterfront — I am from Edinburgh in Scotland, I am currently studying art at the University of Dundee and I love all things creative. I enjoy trying out new things such as recently joining my Uni surf club as a beginner and have tried lots of different sports.
Kiernan Dean-Hall, Waterfront Director
Kiernan Dean-Hall, Waterfront Director — Hello all! I'm Kiernan and I will once again be the waterfront director this summer. This will be my 6th summer on staff, and 5th as waterfront director. I grew up in Kalamazoo Michigan and attended Kalamazoo College for my bachelor's degree. I have previously lived in Germany and can speak the german language at a fairly high level. I am excited to be back this summer and can't wait to see what makes this summer unique!
Klára Hosová, Sports Instructor
Klára Hosová, Sports Instructor — Hi! This is my first time at camp and also first time to stay abroad for a long period of time! I can’t imagine how it is crazy for me. I am so excited to be on staff this year. I hope that we will make a great staff and we will enjoy the time at camp! In my free time I enjoy dancing, reading books and listening stories. I am a person who always say YES on everything. I mean if you like to do something crazy I am here for that!
Kornelia Łysiak, Kitchen Lead
Kornelia Łysiak, Kitchen Lead — I am Kornelia. I am from Poland. I love new experiences and I am very excited. I like music and sports :)
Liam Hunt, Kitchen Lead
Liam Hunt, Kitchen Lead — Hi, my name is Liam and I'm in the kitchen. This is my third year both on staff and in the kitchen. I love reading, cooking, and working with kids. Looking forward to a great summer
Madelin Lapp, Social Media
Madelin Lapp, Social Media — Hi friends! My name is Madelin (she/her). This will be my fifth summer on staff. I come back to camp every year because I love the feeling of home, and the connections I've made here with other staff, campers, and their families. One of my favorite things to do with campers is listen to their fun stories!
Mar Brown, Archery Instructor
Mar Brown, Archery Instructor — Hello! My name is Mar! My pronouns are They/She. This is my 10th year at camp overall. I am excited to be on the range and teaching old and new campers the way of the arrow. During the off season I will be attending Grand Valley State University there I will be majoring in Criminology. I am excited to see all the new and old faces bringing laughs and smiles back on camp grounds.
Mehmet Çerçi, Waterfront
Mehmet Çerçi, Waterfront — Hello, my name is Mehmet, and this will be my first year on VBYC staff. I am sure that it going to be my best summer ever. I am studying Maritime Business Management. I love sport, especially football, bodybuilding and swimming, and travelling is my greatest passion. I look forward to taking care of children and playing games. See you there!
Samar Hussain, Craft Instructor
Samar Hussain, Craft Instructor — Hello! I’m Samar and I’m so excited to be teaching the arts and crafts program this Summer!
Sıla Asici, Outdoors Instructor
Sıla Asici, Outdoors Instructor — Hey, I'm Sıla. This is my first time in the VBYC and I'm so excited to meet everyone! I study Psychology at Hacettepe University in Türkiye. I love dancing, exercising, listening music and watching sitcoms. I'm also interested in fashion. I can't wait to spend my summer with children and camp staff!