The FAA's 2018 Reauthorization Act required the FAA to establish a collegiate training initiative program relating to UAS. It also called for a process to designate an association of public, two-year institutions of higher education as Community and Technical College Centers of Excellence in Small UAS System Technology Training.
The Unmanned Aircraft Systems Collegiate Training Initiative (UAS-CTI) Program addresses the Section 631 requirement of the FAA 2018 Reauthorization Act. Any public two-year institutions of higher education that participate in the UAS-CTI program will also be designated as members of the Consortium for Small Unmanned Aircraft System Technology Training. The FAA will invite members of this consortium to participate in annual meetings and other events with the agency, and we will facilitate the development sharing of best practices through this consortium.
About the Initiative
The Unmanned Aircraft Systems Collegiate Training Initiative (UAS-CTI) is a new program designed for universities, colleges, and technical schools by the FAA to recognize institutions that prepare students for careers in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) or drones. Post-secondary institutions with UAS curriculums that want to be recognized as UAS-CTI participants now have the opportunity to apply for this distinction. The results of this collaborative working relationship will include a continuous dialogue with stakeholders to connect universities with general industry, local governments, law enforcement, and regional economic development entities to address labor force needs.
How to Qualify
The UAS-CTI program guidelines are as follows:
- School type: Not-for-profit, two- or four-year, post-secondary educational institutions are eligible.
- Accreditation: Must be institutionally accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education.
- Degree/Certification: To be eligible, schools must currently offer a Bachelors or Associates degree in UAS; or a degree with a minor, concentration, or certificate in UAS. The FAA considers a degree viable only if it is active and students graduate with the degree or certification.
Read the UAS Collegiate Training Initiative Program (PDF).
View the UAS Collegiate Training Initiative Program Briefing Deck (PDF).
How to Apply
Requests for participation in the UAS-CTI program should be submitted to 9-FAA-UAS-CTI@faa.gov and include:
- Name of your school
- Point of contact
- School type
- Description of UAS degrees or certifications
The FAA will send qualified schools an initial questionnaire to establish eligibility for the program.
Participating institutions will engage with the FAA, other participants, general industry, local governments, law enforcement, and regional economic development entities to address labor force needs. This collaboration will ensure that UAS-CTI school graduates have the knowledge and skills needed to pursue a successful career in a UAS-related field. Public two-year colleges that become a UAS-CTI school will be designated as members of the Consortium for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Technology Training. In addition, these new UAS-CTI Partners will support the FAA's efforts to expand the aviation workforce of the future while providing additional opportunities for Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) students.