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STCC to Offer Comprehensive Drone-training Course

SPRINGFIELD — As business use of drones continues to expand, Springfield Technical Community College will offer an introductory three-day course to train people to become pilots of the unmanned aircraft systems.

Intro to sUAS (small unmanned aircraft systems) will be taught on Saturdays — Sept. 8, 15 and 22 — between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. at STCC.

The Federal Aviation Administration has released regulations that pave the way for expanded commercial use of the aircraft systems commonly called drones. As part of the guidelines, drone pilots are required to pass the FAA’s remote pilot knowledge test “Unmanned Aircraft — General” to receive an FAA remote pilot certification and be able to use drones for commercial purposes.

STCC’s comprehensive 18-hour ‘Intro to sUAS’ course provides hands-on skills training for aspiring business operators to fly drones safely and efficiently and helps them prepare for FAA certification. 

Goldman Sachs Research estimates the economic impact of sUAS technology to be $100 billion between 2016 and 2020. Much of this growth comes from the application of drone technology to existing industries, as well as emerging businesses yet to be created, their growth facilitated by the FAA regulations which went into effect in 2016. 

Industry applications include construction, agriculture, insurance, real estate, public safety, inspections, law enforcement, ecommerce, environmental conservation and mapping, to name a few.

“It’s the next transformative technology that will change how business is done for many industries,” said Elliot M. Levy, senior director for the Workforce Development Center at STCC. “We are offering the most comprehensive, up-to-date course material available so that members of our business community can be among those who are capturing this technology’s potential.”

STCC President John B. Cook said the drone course exemplifies the college’s effort to bring technology innovation to the regional workforce.

“This course focuses on one of the most innovative technologies today, and STCC is pleased to offer this unique workforce opportunity,” Cook said. “This training is ideal for people working in a wide range of fields.”


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