“70 percent of people entering the workforce today are working in industries that will soon be drastically affected by the use of robots.” A report from The Foundation for Young Australians
The indicators are all there. Goldman Sachs predicts drones to be a 100 million dollar industry by 2020, more and more industries are invigorating their once stagnant practices with the aid of UAVs and drone racing is breaking out as one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Drones are, and will continue to change our world in ways we never thought possible.
The Drones of Today
Drones are already making an impact in our daily lives. They’re innovating transportation, streamlining rescue efforts and lessening the pocketbook pain of aerial observation. Mahmood Hussein, drone pilot, trainer and operator of the aviation school Global Drone Solution says:
The demand for drone use, in a wide variety of businesses, is absolutely skyrocketing. Drones are transforming industries such as plumbing, mining, trades and even transport and delivery. For people pursuing a career as a drone pilot, the rewards are great. The average salary of a drone pilot is already around $100,000, with the top end nudging $150,000 a year.
So, how are the drones of today being utilized?
- Utilities: Using drones to inspect power lines, telephone towers and wind turbines without needing to employ several people, cranes and cherry pickers
Mining: Drones are already commonplace and are used to measure stockpiles of minerals in hours, rather than days. Also used for surveying work and environmental impact research
Fast Food Delivery: Big companies such as Domino's Pizza will be looking to invest in drones for pizza delivery in the future
Package Delivery: Australia Post and Amazon are already investing in drone technology as a way of delivering packages
Skilled Trade Jobs: Being able to inspect things from a height, such as a solar panel output, leaking roofs and guttering.
Real Estate: Panoramic aerial footage of properties to show investors new opportunities or create marketing videos
- Wedding photography: Aerial videography of weddings is set to become the next big thing and will allow couples to capture diverse and creative footage of their special day (Charleston)
The Drones of Higher Education
But that’s not the only way drones are changing our lives. They’re also invigorating higher education. “The University of North Dakota, which started its bachelor's degree course in unmanned aircraft systems in 2008, recently received a $25 million endowment (it's largest ever) to build a new drone research and training facility (Rooney).” And they’re not the only program looking to prepare their students for the new world ahead of us.
The Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative, a nonprofit that helps 21 school districts in southeastern Kentucky improve their education systems, is hoping to take its aerospace program to the next level by building an estimated $25 million drone-testing site in Hazard, Kentucky, to help scientists and entrepreneurs hone their drone-related inventions and to prepare students for jobs in the emerging industry (Nix).
Not only are drones making an impact in the commercial and domestic sector, but they’re soaring into classrooms and universities across the nation as educators realize the potential of the marketplace and of teaching STEM through a multi-platform aerial robotics program.
Some of the earliest schools to sit in the drone jet stream now boast incredible, fully accredited degrees in Unmanned Aerial Systems, schools like:
- Oklahoma State University
- Kansas State Polytechnic University
- North Dakota University
- Indiana State University
- Troy University
- Idaho State University
- Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University
The Drones of the Future
So, what does this mean for today’s students? Well, apart from needing to be prepared for the fastest growing technology, they’re going to be the ones initiating the next surge of innovations — innovations which can’t occur unless today’s elementary learners start interacting with drones early on.
Higher education institutions are already ahead of the curve, offering students brand-new degrees and career opportunities. With high schools barely initiating their own learning solutions, it’s time elementary education caught up with the newest technological trend.
In order to be fully prepared for the future of drones, our students need to start interacting with them early on, in healthy, thought-fostering ways, outside of drones being seen simply as toys.
Once students recognize that while piloting a drone is fun, these incredible machines are capable of so much more, they’ll be able to build upon their experiences, brainstorming their own ideas for drone innovations. It’s these ideas and inventions which will continue to re-energize the Age of Technology over the foreseeable future. They will be in charge of finding modern solutions to technological issues.
Drones for Good
That’s why we’ve developed Ready, Set, Drone! around Drones for Good, a worldwide movement to highlight the pursuit and practice of humanitarian UAV efforts.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has taken the Drones for Good message and ran with it, promote the positive drone and robotic innovations through an international competition — one holding a pretty hefty prize pool.
As their mission statement says, “the UAE Government invite the most innovative and creative minds to find solutions that will improve people’s lives and provide positive technological solutions to modern day issues. The UAE Drones for Good Award is dedicated to transforming the innovative technologies behind civilian drones into practical, realizable solutions for improving people’s lives today.”
Ready, Set, Drone! teaches students to fly and then poses the question: How will you use drones for good? With an early introduction to the drone careers available, the limitless potential of UAVs and how drones are invigorating and innovating our daily lives, we’re planting the seed of creativity and imagination.
Ready, Set, Drone! is a brand new package developed for 4th-6th grade learners. Housing 12, one-hour lessons plus open-ended extensions, it’s the perfect introduction to the world of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). In this indoor camp, students explore drone careers by:
- Studying with Droneology, an online drone education platform that introduces students to drone fundamentals, safety and real-world applications
- Mastering basic piloting skills
- Brainstorming ways drones could be used for good, sketching out their ideas for new and innovative drones and drone uses.
Ready, Set, Drone! was developed specifically for instructors ready to launch an elementary introduction to UAV technology — there is no easier way to introduce drones to your students.
Charleston, L. (2016, August 31). Why Being A Drone Pilot Is The Job Of The Future. Retrieved January 03, 2018, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2016/08/31/why-being-a-drone-pilot-is-the-job-of-the-future_a_21463335/
Foundation for Young Australians. (2017). The new work order Ensuring young Australians have skills and experience for the jobs of the future, not the past. Retrieved January 3, 2018, from http://www.fya.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/fya-future-of-work-report-final-lr.pdf
Nix, N. (2017, August 18). The Value of Bringing Drones to the Classroom. Retrieved August 31, 2017, from https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2017/08/the-value-of-bringing-drones-to-the-classroom/537150/
Rooney, B. (n.d.). Drone pilot wanted: Starting salary $100,000. Retrieved August 31, 2017, from http://money.cnn.com/2014/11/25/news/drone-pilot-degree/index.html
UAE. (n.d.). The UAE Drones for Good Award. Retrieved January 03, 2018, from http://www.dronesforgood.ae/