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SAIT’s Connector lab helping students lift off without a big payload

Students at SAIT wanting their career opportunities to take flight have the chance to do it, for little more than the cost of a couple coffees.

Upon completion of SAIT’s drone flight training and exam preparation students can take the written exam to get their license for as little at $10. Additionally, SAIT provides students with a no-cost practical test following their successful completion of written exams, which would typically cost $300 to $400.

This is all being done at SAIT’s Connector lab. They focus on training students on flying drones and help them study for thier written drone exam. Additionally the connector lab also provides a diverse array of technological educational pursuits.

“If you put in the study time and the effort it takes to get the license, then yes, you can come here and get your practical license for free if you’re a SAIT student,” said Rick Duchscher, the Remote Pilot Aircraft System (RPAS) Lead at the SAIT School of Construction.

Duchscher is also a Transport Canada flight reviewer who tests students during their practical exam.

While SAIT’s Connector lab has received some national attention, there’s still work to do, to raise awareness on campus.

“I mean, it’s pretty cool honestly. I did not know there was a drone lab at SAIT. I feel like SAIT is providing us students with more opportunities day by day, so it’s pretty cool,” said Hamza Gulseven, a first year business student at SAIT.

Last year, hundreds of students came to the SAIT’s Connector lab to see and learn in its 6,500-square-foot space. It is a place for students from different programs to work together. It also features industry speakers and is a hub for capstone projects.

“This space is pretty unique in that I don’t think there is anything like this in Canada that exists at any post secondary,” said Duchscher.

The SAIT’s Connector lab is equipped with 3D scanners, augmented and virtual reality systems, and a wide array of advanced survey instruments, as well as various imaging units, both aerial and terrestrial.