Drone Schools Look to Woo Younger Pilots for Commercial Jobs

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GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) — Leaders in the unmanned aircraft industry are trying to persuade young people who think drones are cool to consider flying them for a living.

Commercial pilots must obtain a Federal Aviation Administration drone license, and some companies that employ such pilots have started selling classes that help students prepare for the FAA test or just figure out whether they would be interested in such a career.

SkySkopes, a Grand Forks company that employs unmanned aircraft pilots, is offering an online class for students as well as a separate flight certification course. The 20-week course is also being offered remotely through the North Dakota Center For Distance Education.

Seventeen-year-old North Dakota high school student Ava Niemeier says she’s looking at SkySkopes Academy because she’s interested in using drones to make movies.