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Getting started

Members of the media participating in a drone training program developed by the Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership.

Members of the media participating in a drone-training course.

Drones offer a multitude of educational, research, commercial, and recreational opportunities, and universities are rich environments for exploring their potential. However, flying drones on unversity property introduces unique challenges for safety, security, and privacy.  

That's why Virginia Tech has established a UAS Policy to enable drone operation on campus and university-controlled property. The policy makes it possible for students, faculty, and others to use drones for research, education, and recreation, while preserving our safe, secure campus environment. The policy also facilitates compliance with Federal Aviation Administration regulations and state and local laws. 

Anyone wishing to operate UAS on or with University property must be familiar with and follow the UAS Policy and the specific protocols that govern the type of operation they're interested in.

The university has established protocols for:

We also have a collection of resources on drone regulations, training, and best practices, along with information about weather, airspace classification, aeronautical charts, and other topics useful to drone pilots at all levels. 

And if you don't see your situation covered on this site, just contact us! We can probably find a way to enable the operation you're planning, from small drone racing to large UAS development endeavors and everything in between. We can assist you with proposal development or protocol changes. 

Contact the UAS Safety Office at uassafety@vt.edu.