One of the latest program offerings in the Syracuse City School District is in one of the fastest growing fields in the area and the nation.

PSLA at Fowler is training students for the drone industry.

Hector Ferrer is a 10th Grader at PSLA and in the 2nd year in drone tech program, “The achievement of this is to get your pilot’s license to fly drones and get paid for it, so we’re going to have to take a test to get it, so we’re also reviewing it, studying it to pass it.” 

With the drone industry growing rapidly in Central New York and the Mohawk Valley the program is aimed at helping it continue to thrive in the area by helping to fill the industry’s needs here.

Jon Parry, Director of the GENIUS NY drone business accelerator program, says, “They need people to pilot, they need people to do manufacturing and assembly and they also need people to do the software and coding and the data analytics that is really critical to bring these technologies to the next level.”

A new grant is helping take this program to the next level.

Ed Levine is leading the Drone Technology Program at PSLA.

“In four years they’ll earn what they need for high school but they’ll continue taking more and more college classes and at that point they’ll pretty much only be at college classes so when they finish the program they’ll get their high school diploma and the associates all at the same time and its covered by the grant.  This group is going to come in ready to go from the get go right out of high school with the associates degree already with those skills.”  Levine tells NewsChannel 9.

With so many jobs out there in the drone field Levine says they’re tailoring what the lab should look like to resemble what colleges are doing in this field and what skills the industry wants these students to have.