Farmers and First Responders are Thankful for Drones and the Unmanned Aerial Systems Program at Hinds Community College

Find out how Mississippi colleges are using drones to improve farming and medical response for people in undeserved areas.

In comparison, the great state of Mississippi is more all rural than metropolitan and having access to certain things are difficult to come by. Now, with the help of technology, this common problem has a solution.

The Unmanned Aerial Systems Program at Hinds Community College in Raymond, Miss, prepares students for careers as operators and/or coordinators of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) aka “drones.” The program offers a 2-year  Associates of
Applied Science degree, plus industry and government certifications. Hinds
students learn to build and operate drones, understand UAS hardware/software
systems, as well as learn commercial applications such as aerial photography,
agriculture, surveying, mapping in addition to ecological monitoring and inspecting.hinds logo

Hinds UAS Instructor, Dennis Lott, told Jackson, Miss news station, WAPT-TV, “80% of the commercial market in the United States is going to be agriculture.”

Lott also mentioned that the future of drones could help farmers grow crops, deliver emergency supplies and even drop off packages at your front doorstep, now being tested by retail website Amazon.

Hinds is one of the first institutions of higher learning in the U.S. to teach students not only to maintain drones but to fly them for the commercial application of the future. In 2016, Hinds joined forces with Mississippi State University to extend their students farm droneeducational opportunities with the 2+2 agreement in their Precision Agriculture department. In addition to the 60 hours of coursework at Hinds, students can transfer to MSU for a bachelor’s in Agricultural Engineering Technology and Business department.

In addition to the relationship with MSU, Hinds CC has been collaborating with William Carey University in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, since 2014, to explore the possibilities of sending medical response faster with the help of drones. The Healthcare Integrated Rescue Operations or HiRO uses a modified DSI 1000+ drone to carry a 20-pound telemedical kit to send ahead while first responders are in route to a remote area like a farm or inside of a national park. Each kit has a Google Glass video glasses which connects bystanders with a doctor to walk them on how to care for a person in need of medical attention before an ambulance arrives.   To see a simulation of how the HiRO drone will work and save people’s lives, visit their YouTube channel HERE.

By allisonjoyner

Born in Mobile. Raised in Birmingham. Educated in Atlanta. Adulated in Jackson. And back in the ATL.

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