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Sinclair College Unveils New Online COA Course for UAS

New Program Called 'COASmart' is Latest Element in Ohio's UAS Strategy

December 9, 2013 (Dayton, OH) –Sinclair College in Dayton, Ohio is unveiling an innovative new online course that teaches students how to get approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to fly  Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) in the same airspace as other aircraft. Students in the class will learn how to apply for a Certificate of Authorization (COA), which is required to fly UAS in unrestricted airspace.

The course, adapted from a current traditional classroom offering, uses interactive learning that leverages integrated multimedia to allow students to produce their own draft COA that will help them produce a high-quality COA submission to the FAA, saving both the applicant and the agency time and resources. In the current regulatory environment, public entities are eligible to apply for COAs.  However, the tools and analysis techniques used in the COA development process and taught in this course will be invaluable for private operators as UAS integration and commercialization progresses.

"The Dayton Region has made remarkable strides in UAS under the leadership of the Dayton Development Coalition and the State of Ohio," Sinclair Vice President of Workforce Development Deb Norris said. "Through educational, industry and government partnerships, we are committed to support the UAS industry through our National UAS Training and Certification Center."

The COASmart program provides an outstanding resource for those interested in learning how to develop a COA application and further solidifies Sinclair's thought leadership position nationally.  The opportunities in UAS are limitless for those with airspace access but those without access will forever be behind in this rapidly changing industry. We see the COASmart program as a logical next step in helping promote a streamlined and efficient COA process that saves applicants and the FAA increasingly valuable resources and time."

Sinclair's goal with this program is to share the knowledge and experience that the college's subject-matter experts have gained through completing the COA process six times to assist in the development of the burgeoning multi-billion dollar UAS industry. The COASmart program is believed to be the first program designed to inform and support the COA submission process to ever be offered online. Students may enroll in COASmart at the standard rate of $650. Sinclair plans to introduce additional online versions of existing short courses in UAS over the coming months in the following topics: Introduction to UAS, Precision Agriculture for UAS, UAS and the Law, UAS Standards and Regulations, and Geospatial Information for UAS.

Sinclair College offers an academic certificate in UAS and currently has six COAs at two sites in Ohio: at the Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airpark and at the Wilmington AirPark. The college also owns a fleet of UAS as well as one of the few commercially focused UAS sensor simulators in the nation. The Sinclair Board of Trustees recently committed $1.4 million to fund a phased approach for Sinclair's National Center for UAS Training and Education.

Sinclair is recognized as a local and national leader in delivering high-quality and affordable higher education. One of the oldest and best known community colleges in the nation, Sinclair recently celebrated its 126th year and is a board member of the prestigious League for Innovation in the Community College. Sinclair offers over 170 accredited degrees and certificates and has graduated more degree and certificate holders than any other community college in the State of Ohio over the last five years.

Adam Murka

Director of Public Affairs

Sinclair Community College

Direct: (937) 512-2947

Cell: (937) 321-5400