Sky’s the limit: Butler Tech offers drone summer camp

The sky’s the limit for some student this summer as Butler Tech offers its first drone camp.

Butler County children and teens ages 7 to 15 can now register for the camp designed to teach them how to fly and use drones for both fun and practical applications.

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Participants will not only fly drones on instructional missions, but will also race the small aerial machines and learn to attach and operate cameras for still and video photography.

It’s high-flying fun but with possible career pay offs later, said Butler Tech officials.

“Drones are no longer just a toy for amusement. Major companies are heavily investing in research to make drones part of everyday commerce,” said Jon Graft, superintendent of Butler Tech, which serves 10 public school systems in Butler and Northern Hamilton County.

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“By hosting drone camp this summer, we want to create a fun environment that gives girls and boys an early comfort level with drones, which will have more career applications when they are adults.”

The “Drone Camp” will have local ties as its instructor is 2013 Lakota East High School graduate Matt King.

“Drone Camp is a great opportunity for kids of all abilities to get excited about drone technology,” said King, who is also the co-founder and CEO of the Drone Camp company.

“They will even learn about drone safety and rules, all leading up to their honorary Junior Drone Pilot ceremony,” he said.

The campers don’t have to have any experience with drones, or even own one. Drones are provided, and students will be flying in about 30 minutes, said school officials.

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The three-day camp includes 12 hours of flight instruction using four different types of drones. Campers will also build their own drone, which is theirs to keep.

Announcement of the youth camp is the latest in a series of program moves by Butler Tech to involve younger students in what used to be an enrollment limited to only high school juniors and seniors.

Last month, Butler Tech opened its first career lab, offering eighth-graders exposure to 20 different careers via inter-active computer and other learning stations at its main D. Russel Lee campus in Fairfield Twp.

The same month saw Butler Tech announce for the first time in its history that sophomores will be allowed to enroll in its career education programs beginning next school year.

The new drone camp will be offered in morning or afternoon sessions at the Butler Tech D. Russel Lee campus in Fairfield Twp. Lunch is included. To sign-up or to learn more, visit or call 513-512-9108.

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