Henderson State University introduced a new minor in Aviation with Emphasis on Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (drones) this fall to provide education and training to help students obtain the Federal Aviation Administration’s Remote Pilot – Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) certificate.
Ten of the 14 students in the first drone class taught by Chuck Rook have successfully passed their FAA drone certification exam on the first attempt and are now certified drone pilots, according to Troy Hogue, director of Henderson’s Department of Aviation.
The remaining four students are scheduled to take the exam before the end of the semester.
“The use of drones is not strictly limited to aviation-only endeavors,” Hogue said. “Their use will span across several differing disciplines across campus. As such, the commercial use of drones will be a bridging of aviation with other fields such as multimedia, digital arts, criminal justice and engineering.
Hogue said the UAS course goes beyond FAA exam preparation.
“Based upon our department’s experience of providing profession-based aviation education and flight training, we designed the drone course to prepare students to thoroughly understand the National Airspace System and how to think and function as pilots as they operate their drone.”
Certification is not required for the recreational use of drones, but commercial operation requires proper training and certification. Commercial use is generally described as any kind of flight operation that can be tied to economic benefit.
For more information, contact Hogue at Hoguet@hsu.edu.