High-flying fun is guaranteed May 4 at the inaugural University of Arkansas – Fort Smith Drone Day, hosted by the Unmanned Aerial Systems program. The free event will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Stubblefield Center, located at 5402 Kinkead Ave.
“This is a great opportunity for local schools and the community to see the exciting work we’re doing here at the university with our Unmanned Aerial Systems program,” said David Pollman, director of the UAS program. “Our goal is to promote collaboration between schools and teams, both now and in the future.”
Local junior high and high school students will compete in an aerial course using drones they built or 3D printed. Teams will present their projects to judges in addition to flying the competition route. Teams will be judged for both presentation and the ability to navigate the course. Awards will be presented in both junior high and high school divisions for Anything That Flies and 3D Printed, along with an Overall Presentation award.
In addition to Pollman, UAFS Interim Chancellor Edward Serna and Ken Warden, dean of the College of Applied Science and Technology, will address participants.
“We are so excited to offer this kind of event to our region. Exposing students to emerging technology is crucial to our success as a university, and their experiences with it will benefit regional industries in the years to come,” said Dr. Ken Warden, Dean of the College of Applied Science and Technology at UAFS.
Vendors will also be on hand from the 188th Wing of the Arkansas Air National Guard, NWA3D, Arkansas Valley Electric, Sentera, Unmanned Vehicle Technologies, and the Army National Guard Shadow Platoon.