MVCC selected for drone training initiative

ROME — The Federal Aviation Administration announced that Mohawk Valley Community College has been selected for its Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS-CTI) Collegiate Training Initiative program.

According to an announcement from MVCC officials.

To qualify for the initiative, which will be in effect for three years, colleges must offer a bachelor’s or associate’s degree in UAS or a degree with a minor, concentration or certificate in UAS. Schools must provide a curriculum that covers various aspects of UAS training, including practical flight practice, maintenance, uses, applications, privacy issues, security, and federal policies regarding UAS.

“We are only one of the few colleges in the country to offer a comprehensive program in advanced RPAS technology, through which students learn skills to design, build, test, fly and apply remotely piloted aircraft,” said Professor Bill MVCC’s Judycki. “We are the only college in the country that trains students to fly both a sophisticated multirotor and a fixed-wing aircraft capable of centimeter accuracy in photogrammetry and LIDAR, as well as flight training on a flight simulator from $250,000.”

MVCC’s RPAS program prepares students for emerging jobs in agriculture, inspection, and emergency services in the United States using the latest mapping and photogrammetry software (PIX4D) and remote sensing packages such as thermal , multispectral and 3D LiDar. Students also use MVCC’s FABLab to explore the modeling and fabrication of designs created using AutoCAD and learn about Global Positioning Systems (GPS), Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and capabilities. remote sensing systems used in RPAS operations.

The MVCC is a member of the NUAIR Alliance, a coalition of 200 entities working together to operate and oversee RPAS testing in three states. NUAIR Alliance is headquartered in Syracuse and supports the RPAS test site (one of only seven in the country) at Rome’s Griffiss International Airport. Participation in this alliance keeps MVCC at the forefront of RPAS technology.

A National Science Foundation (NSF) award funds the work of MVCC, industry partners, and commercial end users of RPAS to align specific job skills for one-semester microloans. Additionally, the NSF award funded the purchase of an mdLiDAR1000 Microdrone and sensors for agriculture and infrastructure inspection, as well as a supercomputer for processing flight data.