STARBASE ROBINS March Newsletter

Educating, Equipping, and Empowering Students in STEM.

The Director's Corner

We are already two months into the new year. STARBASE ROBINS has been busy as usual. It has been exciting to have students back in our facilities. We are often reminded that our current students have not had field trips outside of their schools for the last two years. We are very thankful for our school district partners in helping to provide a safe STEM learning environment for students and teachers.

We are especially proud of the partnerships that afford opportunities to use our voice to empower the broader community. For the last three years, STARBASE ROBINS has been apart of the Mentor Georgia Advisory Council. Our role played an intricate part in helping to establish Mentor Georgia as an affiliate of the national Mentor Network. STARBASE ROBINS has recently been asked to join the Advisory Board for the Georgia Statewide Afterschool Network (GSAN). GSAN’s mission is to advance, connect, and support high quality out-of-school time, afterschool and summer learning programs to promote the success of Georgia’s youth and children. We are excited about the opportunity to use our voice in continuing to add to the conversation in these spaces. You will have the opportunity to read more about our partnerships in this edition of our newsletter.

We are also excited about showcasing one of our long-standing partnerships with Fort Valley State University and the College of Education. Our presentation proposal highlighting STARBASE ROBINS and Fort Valley State University's STEM Educational Practicum was accepted for the Georgia Science Teachers Association Conference held in Peachtree City Georgia.


Congratulations and welcome aboard Kylie Youmans! Kylie is the newest addition to our instructional staff. She will serve as one of the instructors for our DoD STARBASE program. Kylie holds a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary and Middle Grades Education with a minor in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
Audra Hubbard is the Lead Instructor at STARBASE ROBINS. She was sent a congratulatory letter from Georgia Senator Jon Ossoff for earning a spot in the Annual National Summer Teachers' Institute on Innovation, STEM, and Intellectual Property. Mrs. Hubbard was recognized for her hard work, talent and dedication to help raise up great leaders, thinkers and innovators.

If you are a elementary, middle, or high school teacher looking to increase your knowledge of invention and innovation, the 2022 National Summer Teacher Institute (NSTI) has a spot for you. The 2022 NSTI workshop will be held virtually through the Virbela platform the week of July 25-29, 2022. The deadline to submit your application is April 12, 2022. To apply or for more information click the link below.

STARBASE 2.0 Afterschool Program Spotlight

Each month, STARBASE ROBINS will spotlight a staff member or teacher in our 2.0 Afterschool Club. In this edition of our newsletter, we spotlight Donna Burner. Mrs. Burner has been teaching for over 20 years. In 2017, she received her Specialist degree in Curriculum and Instruction with an add-on in Educational Leadership from Piedmont College. She is married with six children, has two dogs and a cat. Mrs. Burner teaches at Mossy Creek Middle School in Houston County where she serves as the Business and Computer Science Teacher and FBLA Advisor.

She is a great asset to our STARBASE 2.0 Club both as a Teacher and Mentor. The kids love her pleasant demeanor. Mr. Rufus Crane our STARBASE 2.0 Afterschool Facilitator is a former student of Mrs. Burner's.

STEM Powered Girls and Super STEM Boys Academies

Big picture

STEM Powered Girls and Super STEM Boys Adventure Summer Academies allow rising 6th - 8th grade students the skills and concepts needed to apply STEM through hands-on, inquiry-based learning. The girls and boys will problem-solve, build confidence in STEM applications and STEM careers exploration. This is more than a summer camp, it's a year-long adventure with Saturday Sparks held in October 2022 and March 2023. Students in good standing with the academy's attendance and behavioral policy will not have to reapply for the 2023 Summer Academy.

Upon acceptance into the summer academy, a $50.00 registration fee is required. The remaining cost of $450.00 will be paid through Scholarships. Each applicant will answer the short essay using a minimum of 150 words and submit a letter of recommendation from a teacher. All entries must be received by April 15, 2022 for consideration. Please contact Tangie Franks by email or call 478-926-1986 if you have questions. Click on the link below to access the application.

What is the cost?

$50 registration fee (upon notified acceptance)

What is required?

Answer the short essay below and a letter of recommendation from a teacher.

When is the deadline to submit the application?

April 15, 2022

CGTC Marketing Team Visits STARBASE ROBINS

Big picture

Each week, we have the opportunity to Educate, Empower, and Equip students from local elementary schools in STEM. Career Guides are people in our community who come onsite to share their personal story about their career. The students at Rosa Taylor Elementary in Bibb County had the opportunity to learn about different career paths in marketing, photography, graphic design and public relations. Our guest speaker Ms. Amyre Makupson is the Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Central Georgia Technical College (CGTC). She brought her entire team to share their stories about their careers at CGTC. Students were able to ask questions at the conclusion of the presentation and were provided a CGTC cup to take home.

STARBASE ROBINS would like to thank Ms. Makupson and her team for coming to share their story with our students. If you are interested in serving as a Career Guide, please contact Tangie Franks at for more information.

STARBASE and FVSU Present at 2022 GSTA Conference

Big picture
The STARBASE ROBINS Director Wesley Fondal Jr., along with Instructor Demetria Smith and Professor Jessica Jefferson at Fort Valley State University (FVSU) College of Education had the opportunity to present at the Georgia Science Teachers Association (GSTA) Conference. This opportunity allowed, conference attendees to learn about the history of our partnership and why the partnership is necessary in the training and development of FVSU Teacher Candidates. FVSU Teacher Candidates experience a STEM focused practicum to include: observations, reflections, and co-teaching with the STARBASE ROBINS instructional staff.

The STARBASE ROBINS STEM Education Practicum continues today under the direction of the current Dean Dr. Beth Day-Hairston. The goal for the continued partnership between STARBASE ROBINS and FVSU is to prepare "excellent educators" focused on STEM pedagogy through interactive field experiences and internships.

Central Georgia FLL Super Regional Tournament Highlights

STARBASE Central Georgia FLL Super Regional Video
STARBASE ROBINS hosted the Central Georgia FIRST Lego League (FLL) Super Regional Qualifier. We had 24 teams across the state of Georgia to advance, 17 teams actually participated, and over 300 spectator to converge at the Museum of Aviation. Seven teams from our tournament advanced to the state tournament held at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Georgia. A big thank you to all the teams that competed in the tournament, teachers, parents and students. Looking forward to hosting next year!

A Special Thank You to all our FLL Sponsors

Big picture

STARBASE ROBINS would like to thank all of our sponsors for supporting the Central Georgia FIRST Lego League (FLL) Robotics Tournament. Your donation (monetary, food, in-kind) helped to make our event a huge success. Thank you for your sponsorship and for playing a role in helping to empower the next generation of changemakers and innovators. Your support provides the means and opportunity to help prepare young people for the future.

Thank You to our Sponsors:

  • Zaxbys
  • Chick-fil-A
  • Red Lobster in Perry, Georgia
  • Cascade
  • Standard Technology
  • The UPS Store in Bonaire
  • Word In Season Ministries

Thank you Message to all FLL Volunteers

Big picture
STARBASE ROBINS would like to thank all our FIRST Lego League (FLL) volunteers for making this year's Central Georgia FIRST Lego League (FLL) Robotics Tournament a success. We are beyond excited about the positive feedback and comments received and are looking forward to hosting again next year. Thank you for giving your time and supporting our efforts to make American, the place to find the best minds in STEM and to produce a workforce that is responsive, relevant, and ready to shape a better future.