The Science and Technology Behind Drones: KRWG-TV Highlights NMSU UAS STEM Outreach Program

October 6, 2016

Credit NMSU Physical Science Lab
The students from Las Cruces Public Schools recently attended a Unmanned Aircraft Systems Road show at NMSU. They watched a display of what these drones can do. The goal of this event is to offer area students a chance to explore the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields behind these unmanned aircraft systems through hands on experience.

Henry Cathey, Deputy Director of the Physical Science Lab at NMSU says this day is about the future for these students.

"These young men and these young women have great opportunities in these STEM fields; especially in the UAS world. We are looking at an industry that is a six, eight, ten, possibly up to a $20 billon industry in the United States by 2025.

That future looks bright for anyone interested in working in a field that is using unmanned aircraft systems. According to a recent FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) forecast report, fields like industrial inspection, real estate, agriculture, and insurance are some of the top markets for (UAS) Unmanned Aircraft Systems or drones
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"This particular industry is growing and it's on the edge of expanding, because of the applications," says Cathey.

At the UAS roadshow around 500 students from the Las Cruces Public Schools took part in different learning stations for hands-on learning to understand the science, technology, education, and math behind drones.

Dr. Susan Brown with Director of NMSU's STEM Outreach Center says that the center is working so to educate kids so they know that they know they can be a scientist, mathematician, or engineer.

"We have a lot of STEM outreach afterschool programs and field trips like this. This is the future. They see it in the news, they see self-driving cars, and they have to know that they can be a part of that future," says Brown.

Gabriella Trujillo an eighth-grade student at Vista middle school shares what she experienced at the event.

"I did a simulation of flying the drone on the computer, and I crashed a lot," says Trujillo.

This event had Ana Facio, another eight-grader from Vista middle school rethinking what her future maybe. She says she now may want to work with unmanned aircraft systems.

"I thought it was going to be more of guy-thing, but then I started to do it myself, I thought it was really fun and I would like to do it someday when I grow up," says Facio.
 
Facio's face lights up when she starts talking about her favorite subject, which she says helped her out in the unmanned aircraft system flight simulator.

"My favorite subject is math. I love math! So math would help me out trying to see the distance of when I could make it land in the right place, and how far I could make it go up," says Facio.

Facio says that she is considering becoming an engineer now, and that's exactly what this event's organizers say the roadshow is all about…helping young women and men picture themselves working in the jobs that are required in the industry of unmanned aircraft systems.

Story Courtesy of KRWG NewS and Partners