PFL country director Dr. Heidi Sampang teaches the basics of drone flying to CDC employees. (Photo by Ric Gonzales)
CLARK FREEPORT – Creating awareness on how drones can help communities, volunteers from non-profit organizations recently taught Aeta students and some government employees here the basics of drone flying.
She Maps, an Australian-based social enterprise, and Philippines Flying Labs in coordination with Clark Development Corp. introduced drone technology to some 100 individuals in sessions held at multi-purpose hall inside the Clark Skills and Training Center here.
The “Fly A Drone” program was initiated by PFL country director Dr. Heidi Sampang and benefited 60 students from Grades 9 and 10, and 11 teachers from Mabalacat Technical Vocational School.
The 2.5-hour program teaches students the basics of drone flying which includes learning about safety regulations, manually flying a micro drone, and completing a survey mission for data gathering.
“We believe that early exposure to this (drone flying) innovative technology will stimulate children’s curiosity and hopefully they will want to learn more about Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM) track in the K-12,” said Dr. Sampang who is also a certified She Maps online community UAV course instructor.
She Maps education director Dr. Karen Joyce and its managing director Paul Mead also visited the Philippines and conducted a workshop for teachers interested to learn how to teach children drone flying.
She Maps specializes in supporting teachers to bring drones into the classrooms. It envisions to bring diversity into how people perceive science, and apply it.
Since 2017 She Maps has run the program over 230 times, with over 5,500 students and teachers, in Australia, the USA, and the UK.
Over the weekend, Sampang extended the “Fly A Drone” program to CDC employees from the External Affairs Department, Public Safety, Estate Preservation and Recovery and Geographic Information System.