Ohio colleges have eye on future drone jobs

Some Ohio colleges are preparing students for a boom in the drone industry once the federal government — as is expected — allows civilian unmanned aircraft to fly in U.S. airspace.

The Federal Aviation Administration estimates that as many as 7,500 commercial drones could be flying in national airspace within a few years, and the agency has until 2015 to present a plan for safely integrating drones into U.S. airspace.

At least two Ohio schools — Sinclair Community College in Dayton and Kent State University — are training students for jobs using the technology.

Like the University of North Dakota, Kansas State University and others around the country, the Ohio schools aren’t waiting for the go-ahead to ready students for employment in the industry.

“Our job is to be sure we are preparing the workforce to meet the jobs that are coming,” said Deb Norris, vice president of workforce development and corporate services at Sinclair.

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