Drone Schools in Texas

Considering its size and population there must be a lot of drone schools in Texas, right? You might be surprised. So far,  there is only one degree program that I know of and I just found out about it.

LeTourneau University logoI am talking about LeTourneau University’s Remotely Piloted Aircraft, Bachelor of Science program. This program starts Fall, 2015 and offers a choice of three concentrations:

  • Pilot – the Pilot concentrations is the best fit for students who want to fly unmanned aircraft.
  • Technician – the Technician concentration is the best fit for students interested in RPA maintenance
  • Electronics – for students interested in designing or improving upon electrical systems used in RPAs

However, if you don’t need a degree, and just want to learn how to fly drones, DARTdrones offers classes in Dallas and Houston at various times throughout the year.

DARTdrones logoThey have classed designed for complete beginners, which introduce “you to the basics of flying: FAA rules and regulations, drone safety, an introduction to the equipment and software, and more.” They also discuss the 333 exemption, what you need in order to get one. Also, you can also get a discount off the price of their training course, if you click on the link above and enter the coupon code: DRNHQ10.

In other developments, Texas A&M University Corpus Christi, led by the Lone Star Unmanned Aircraft Systems Center (LSUASC) was selected by the FAA to be one of only six test sites in the country, to study how to integrate unmanned aerial vehicles into the National Airspace System. Despite this, the university does not yet offer any UAV-specific degrees. Hopefully this will change in the near future.

That being said, the state is not completely devoid of UAV training.  Midland College employs drones in both its Energy Technology and Aviation Maintenance programs. Students in the Energy Technology program learn how to operate small drones, while the Aviation Maintenance students are taught how to take them apart and put them back together.

In the meantime, while not offering a degree program, Drone Pilot LLC, a veteran-owned small business located in Austin, advertises “a training program to promote safe and professional flight practices for the hobbyist and provide expertise to new and emerging market leaders.”

Also, there are 3 drone users groups in the Lone Star State which could probably both offer a lot of  help to a novice, as well as be useful in establishing connections:

7 thoughts on “Drone Schools in Texas

  1. I would like to know more about how to become a drone pilot and possibly a drone mechanic. Would you please send me information in regards to minimum standards for acceptance into a program and/or drone mechanics. I live in Fort Worth, Texas.
    Thank you.

    1. Hi Dina,

      As you can see from the above article, there’s just not a lot of programs in Texas at the moment. Not sure if relocating is an option for you, but there are several good pilot programs around the country. Check out our Drone School List article for some options. For aspiring drone mechanics, Minnesota’s Northland Community & Technical College has a very successful program.

  2. My son is 12 but very interested in being a drone pilot. He wears glasses. What are the rules on eyesight with drone piloting?

    1. Hi Samantha,

      I know of no FAA regulations regarding eyeglasses for commercial UAV operators.

      If your son interested in becoming a UAV pilot for the Air Force then it is a different matter. At the moment, the USAF has the same vision requirements for its UAV pilots as its conventional pilots, which are: Uncorrected distant vision cannot exceed 20/200; Uncorrected near vision cannot exceed 20/40; Both distance and near vision must correct to 20/20 or better.

      However, it is my understanding that the Air Force is currently reviewing its UAV pilot requirements, and that they are likely to change in the near future.

  3. I am 61 years old and have been a hobbyist of toy grade drones for years. I also frequent 2 drone flight simulators to stay in practice. I want to be able to perform professional aerial photography or geographic mapping for farming. I do not own a professional quality drone, but have flown several in simulation. I only need to learn about f/stops, exposure, etc. I already have a private license from the FAA for my smaller grade of quads, but want to step up.

  4. I’m looking for a drone pilot to assist on a conference that will be in Austin -Jan 8-11. I’m hosted a tiny whoop race course for non drone attendee and would like a pilot to help and show case drone technology

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