Coastal Drone Academy is a Science, Technical, Engineering, and Math (STEM) extension program within Career Technical Charter High School in Lincoln City. Community Services Consortium (CSC) is the parent organization of Career Tech High School.
Coastal Drone Academy students map coastal towns, forests, wetlands, bays, and beaches. This year we will also be building drones such as the DJI f450 (below).
Our curriculum is a blend of aviation and coastal resources management is being developed based on Snedaker and Getter’s “Coastal Resources Management Guidelines” that was written for the National Park Service. These courses revolve around using Remotely Piloted Aircraft to study the marine environment, the specific courses are
- NR 101: Marine Habitat Management
- AV 101: Introduction to Drones
- AV 102: Marine Studies Drone Operations (see details)
- AV 103: Marine Studies Drone Missions (see details)
These courses are part of the State of Oregon’s Career and Technical Education program, and they are designed to work through experiential, hands-on learning, and collaboration with local marine scientists. My pilots fly missions where they develop knowledge of several key aspects of coastal resource management.
Here is an example of technical education using research projects as we learn salt marsh ecology, surveying, boating, fixed wing drone flying, and seagrass ecology (below) in the Spring of 2018 with our entire Operations and Missions classes having a role (pictured is the bay and the boat where we flew the ODFW Netarts Bay UAS 2018 Mission) to make maps of coastal vegetation there:
In our collaborator’s words, “This is a great opportunity for Career Tech students to pilot these types of UAS that should make them more competitive in the job market when they graduate. For ODFW, this provides a great opportunity for us to work with you and your students to explore the application and utility of fixed wing UAS relative to the quad-copters we currently use and provide your students with a real world application ofUAS technology for management of natural resources.” …Tony D. Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.