New STARBASE directors converge at 167th Airlift Wing for training

  • Published
  • By Airman James DeCicco
  • 167th Airlift Wing

“If you’re going to model your program after another program, [STARBASE] Martinsburg is a good one for you to see and get your eyes on,” said Mikelle Cronk, a member of The SPECTRUM Group.  

As a member of The SPECTRUM Group, Cronk oversees training, curriculum and resources for Department of Defense STARBASE sites across the country and recently she organized a new directors training at the STARBASE site in Martinsburg, West Virginia.  

STARBASE is a science, technology, engineering and mathematics based educational program that provides a “hands-on, minds-on” learning experience for students. 

The Martinsburg site was chosen for the training, held Oct. 25 - Oct. 27, because of the outstanding performance of the director and staff, Cronk explained. 

Sherra Triggs has been involved with the STARBASE Martinsburg program at the 167th Airlift Wing for the last 19 years and serves as the STARBASE state program director in West Virginia. Over that time, she has accumulated experience to continually enhance the STARBASE program, an effort noticed by Cronk in March 2022 during a staff visit.  

“Sherra does an incredible job,” said Cronk. “Her staff is outstanding, she’s extremely organized and the product she gives the students that come and the public education teachers is just phenomenal.”  

The new directors’ training included presentations on fiscal management, program staffing and curriculum strategies, and provided the directors the opportunity to talk with and observe instructors in a STARBASE classroom environment. Cronk explained that, although they could teach with presentations alone, she really wanted the directors to see the passion of the Martinsburg staff. 

“We have brought them into the classroom for the last two days of training so they can interact with the staff, see the excitement the Martinsburg staff have for the program and replicate that back at their sites,” Cronk stated. 

Triggs said the Martinsburg STARBASE staff members are motivated by passion and pride in their work and that compels them to go above and beyond what is asked of them. 

“The SPECTRUM team coming here to teach a new director class is a huge honor, a validation of our efforts and a confidence booster,’’ said Triggs. “I have a lot of pride in that, and it’s very important that we continue what we’re doing.”