Stennis International Airport hosts student drone operators

December 14, 2018

In November, Stennis International Airport (KHSA) in Kiln, Mississippi, hosted students from Pearl River Community College’s Hancock Center.

The class is enrolled in instructor Jason Moore’s Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Technology program. The students got a rare treat as they toured KHSA’s control tower then had a ground school lesson.

The four-semester, 60-hour UAS Technology program, which began enrolling students in August 2017, is the result of a $215,250 Career and Technical Education Challenge Grant through the Mississippi Community College Board, according to Dr. Scott Alsobrooks, Vice President for Workforce and Economic Development at PRCC.

“Graduates will earn an Associate of Applied Science degree,” Moore said, “as well as their FAA Part 107 commercial unmanned-aircraft pilot’s license.”

“The graduates will likely find well-paid work operating drones in the private sector, for tower inspections, law enforcement, maritime and marine-research programs, and mapping and surveying for such industries as agriculture and construction.” said Bill Cork, Chief Executive Officer of the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission.

Moore’s credentials include eight years with the U.S. Navy, former director of avionics and UAV programs at Technical College of the Lowcountry in Beaufort, South Carolina, and training positions in the private sector.

About the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission:

As the economic development authority for Hancock County, Mississippi, the Hancock County Port & Harbor Commission owns and operates Port Bienville Industrial Park and Stennis International Airport — in addition to fostering business investment for John C. Stennis Space Center, NASA’s premier rocket testing facility. For more information, visit

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