CSM of­fers drone cour­ses at Prince Fred­er­ick Cam­pus

Maryland Independent - - News -

Two new drone classes will be of­fered this sum­mer at the Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land’s Prince Fred­er­ick Cam­pus, ac­cord­ing to a news re­lease.

The first course is de­signed for any­one who wants to learn how to safely op­er­ate a small un­manned air­craft sys­tem (sUAS) or drone. The se­cond course is for those pi­lots who want to use a drone for com­mer­cial pur­poses and need to pur­sue FAA cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

“Drones are for every­one,” Bill Win­ters, in­struc­tor for both of the cour­ses, said in the re­lease. “You can use these for home videos. You can use them in your busi­ness. There are unlimited ap­pli­ca­tions.”

With twice as many drones sold in 2016 as in the pre­vi­ous year, ap­prox­i­mately 2.5 mil­lion, the FAA is en­cour­ag­ing drone own­ers to fly safely and has de­vel­oped strict rules and reg­u­la­tions on the op­er­a­tion of drones. “Ev­ery drone that meets FAA cri­te­ria as a sUAS must be reg­is­tered with the Fed­eral Avi­a­tion Ad­min­is­tra­tion,” Win­ters said in the re­lease. “The Fed­eral Avi­a­tion Ad­min­is­tra­tion … would like any­one who re­ceives a sUAS to know the rules and reg­u­la­tions be­fore they take to the air.”

The two up­com­ing cour­ses at the Prince Fred­er­ick Cam­pus are de­signed to pro­vide that train­ing.

“In­tro­duc­tion to Small Un­manned Air­craft Sys­tem (sUAS)” (AVN-5010) is a 12-hour class that will be of­fered on Tues­days and Thurs­days from July 25 to Aug. 3 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Stu­dents will come away from the course with their own drone and the nec­es­sary soft­ware, along with the skills to use it.

“Re­mote Pi­lot Test Prep” (AVN-5020) is a six-hour class on Tues­day and Thurs­day, Aug. 8 and 10 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. de­signed to help pi­lots pre­pare for the FAA cer­ti­fi­ca­tion test. As of Au­gust 2016, FAA pi­lot cer­ti­fi­ca­tion is re­quired of any­one op­er­at­ing a drone for busi­ness pur­poses. “The Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land is ex­cited to of­fer these new cour­ses on this emerg­ing tech­nol­ogy,” Dr. Daniel Mosser, CSM vice pres­i­dent of con­tin­u­ing ed­u­ca­tion and work­force de­vel­op­ment, said in the re­lease. “There are count­less ap­pli­ca­tions and work­force im­pacts ex­pected, and we are of­fer­ing the most com­pre­hen­sive, up-to-date course ma­te­rial avail­able so that our stu­dents can be among those who are cap­tur­ing this tech­nol­ogy’s po­ten­tial.”

Reg­gie Young of Prince Fred­er­ick was a stu­dent in CSM’s in­au­gu­ral drone course held ear­lier this year at the La Plata Cam­pus. The ini­tial course was a com­bi­na­tion of the two cour­ses be­ing of­fered at the Prince Fred­er­ick Cam­pus. “I liked the ma­te­rial that was pre­sented and the ob­sta­cle course chal­lenge to fly the drone through,” he said in the re­lease. “I think this course could re­ally ben­e­fit peo­ple who want to learn to fly drones who’ve never had any pre­vi­ous ex­pe­ri­ence.”

“Ca­reer op­por­tu­ni­ties for stu­dents with drone train­ing are end­less and in­clude mil­i­tary drone pi­lot, fire­fighter, dis­as­ter re­lief, search and res­cue, law en­force­ment, oil and gas op­er­a­tions, traf­fic re­port­ing, agri­cul­ture, forestry, en­gi­neer­ing, com­mer­cial con­trac­tors, film and other in­dus­tries,” Win­ters said. “The world of sUAS is ex­plod­ing and CSM can pro­vide you with the skill to be a hob­by­ist or be­gin your ca­reer in the grow­ing com­mer­cial world.”

Win­ters was in­tro­duced to the small un­manned air­craft pro­gram at the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Agency, and he as­sisted with the drone course of­fered at the La Plata Cam­pus ear­lier this year as well as two cour­ses of­fered at the Leonard­town Cam­pus. He is a cer­ti­fied FAA pi­lot and has been op­er­at­ing sUAS com­mer­cially for five years.

The two up­com­ing cour­ses were de­vel­oped by CSM in part­ner­ship with SkyOps, a tech­nol­ogy trans­fer com­pany that cre­ates train­ing ex­pe­ri­ences that pre­pare the Amer­i­can work­force for new jobs and busi­ness mod­els cre­ated by emerg­ing tech­nol­ogy.

To reg­is­ter and for more in­for­ma­tion, go to www.csmd.edu/ drones. For ad­di­tional as­sis­tance, email cone­dops@csmd.edu or call 301-539-4760.


Joel Kin­i­son, an in­struc­tor from a pre­vi­ous drone course, dis­plays his fly­ing skills dur­ing a small un­manned air­craft sys­tem (sUAS) course at the La Plata Cam­pus.

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