Mayor Mike Purzycki and Parks and Recreation Director Ian Smith today announced details of two City-supported training and career programs for high school juniors and seniors. The City has partnered with the Drone Workforce Solutions (DWS) Drone School owned by local attorney and entrepreneur Theo Nix, Jr., to provide a 16-week training course about the operation of drones and associated drone technology, and a four-week course on the use of virtual reality (VR) computer technology to create simulated environments. These fields of study are growing rapidly in popularity and open new avenues for a young person’s career development.
Ten teens will be selected to attend the drone classes and another 10 will be selected for the VR courses. Those who successfully complete the courses will also receive a six-to-12-week paid internship. Drone course graduates will also take the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) exam to become a licensed drone pilot. The Department of Parks and Recreation will provide students with transportation to their classes as well as lunch.
The City and DWS will hold three informational sessions for prospective students at the William “Hicks” Anderson Community Center on September 23, September 28, and October 5, each session beginning at 6:30 p.m. Young people interested in attending either the drone or VR classes should attend an information session to learn more about the courses and complete an application.
The Drone classes will be held on consecutive Saturdays beginning October 23 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. for 16-weeks at the DWS headquarters located at the New Castle County Chamber of Commerce, 920 Justison Street on the Christina waterfront. Teen participants will receive a scholarship from the City covering all course costs.
The four VR classes will be held on October 23 and 30, and November 6 and 13 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the William “Hicks” Anderson Community Center located at 501 North Madison Street. Teen participants will receive a scholarship from the City covering all course costs.
Nix said students who complete the drone course will learn about:
- Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) and Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS).
- the rules, regulations, and laws regarding drone operations, and in particular governance of drones by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
- the anatomy of a drone and the various drones currently on the market and what they can and cannot do.
- individual components of the drone, both vocabulary and function.
- the principles of flight, including Newton’s Laws of Motion, Bernoulli’s Principle, airspeed, gravity, and other key topics to help understand flight of the drones.
- flight safety and assessment of conditions including weather, site issues, and other obstructions.
- aerial photography and videography and their concepts, including lighting, shutter speed, lens filters, and drone positioning.
- creating a “story line” to their videos.
- Editing, music, and narration to create a video.
- 3-D mapping from the sky through Drone Deploy by creating and calculating measurements for a project.
- How to fly the drones.
Nix said students who complete the VR course will:
- Obtain a thorough understanding of Virtual Reality and 3D Virtualization concepts.
- Understand the various aspects of the equipment needed and the various cameras currently on the market and what they can and cannot do.
- Understanding the technology of 360 cameras, 3D Scanning Cameras, and Software for editing.
- Understanding safety and assessment of conditions including weather, site issues, and other obstructions.
- Learn how to plan a VR photoshoot including pre- and post-capture procedures, photography and videography and its concepts including learning about light, shutter speed, lens filters, and camera positioning, and how to use VR equipment in various situations in the field.
- Learn the world of business and how to become a businessperson as a VR operator.