Sinclair College and Indiana State University signed a partnership agreement on Friday, Dec. 4, at the National UAS Training and Certification Center in Dayton to meet the growing need for training and research in the areas of unmanned aerial systems (UAS), specifically relating to precision agriculture and data analytics.
The partnership will provide a pathway for both institutions to leverage resources related to UAS training, research and development, including approved access to airspace through the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approvals, indoor flight facilities, vehicles and flight crews, and curriculum. In addition, the partnership will enable opportunities to develop pathways for students to articulate credits between the institutions.
"By establishing this partnership with Indiana State University, we're creating a solid foundation for the role that UAS will continue to play in advancing agricultural sciences throughout this region," said Deb Norris, Senior Vice President for Sinclair Workforce Development. "UAS have shown incredible potential for improving farming techniques, and with the large economic impact that agriculture has in both Ohio and Indiana, we expect this to be a driving force in the industry for years to come."
Precision agriculture is expected to total approximately 80 percent of the total market for commercial UAS use in the United States. For states like Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top 10 agricultural producers in the country, UAS and related sensor technologies are poised to have a significant impact as farmers seek ways to increase crop yields and minimize expenses and resource use. Through precision agriculture, UAS can be rapidly deployed to monitor irrigation needs, assess issues with erosion, diagnose crop health, and help prepare for harvest readiness.
Sinclair College is recognized as a national leader in UAS, supported by world-class partnerships, cutting-edge technology, and custom training programs designed to drive the expansion of the UAS industry. Sinclair's curriculum focuses on real-world applications of emerging UAS and sensor technologies through classroom and online instruction, simulation and hands-on vehicle operations.