Drone Business Takes Flight Following DCC Course

Two recent Danville Community College (DCC) students have launched a company that uses drones to feature real estate.

photo of Gordon Martel
Gordon Martel

Gordon Martel and David Hutcheson created Showcase Your Properties following their attendance in DCC's eight-week introductory drone flight course: Intro to Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS).

The company provides three-dimensional and aerial imaging for businesses.

Martel, 64, said that a Rotary presentation given by DCC Assistant Professor of Information Systems Technology Steven Carrigan generated his interest in the UAS program.

“Being able to fly a drone places you at the ground floor of numerous opportunities,” Martel said. “Flying drones gives you a whole new perspective of filming and taking pictures.”

Regarded as a local celebrity for his on-air work on radio stations WBTM and WAKG in Danville, Hutcheson, 65, is also known for his love of flying and aerial photography. Those interests naturally lend themselves to exploring drone flight and photography as imaging technology continues to evolve.

DCC's UAS program prepares students to become Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)-certified drone pilots by passing the knowledge test under Part 107, a critical step to ensure safe and legal drone flight.

“DCC gave me the knowledge and confidence to be able to start this business,” Martel said, adding that his instructor's knowledge and passion for UAS was his favorite aspect of being a DCC student.

Martel also offered some advice to anyone considering learning more about drones at DCC.

“Think outside the box as to how drones can be utilized and the many applications of this new technology,” Martel said, adding that he expects demand for a variety of drone applications to grow. “Drones and their current applications have only scratched the surface. Every day, new uses for drones are being discovered and DCC and its drone program will be a huge part of that process.”

Showcase Your Properties is headquartered in Danville and can be contacted by phone at 434-489-1168 or by email at gpm4415@gmail.com.

Danville Community College is a two-year institution of higher education under the state-wide Virginia Community College System. DCC's service area includes the City of Danville, Pittsylvania County, and Halifax County. For more information about the college’s nearly 100 programs of study, visit www.danville.edu.

 

Photo above: Danville Community College student David "Hutch" Hutcheson flies a drone during a hands-on training exercise through DCC's unmanned aerial systems program.

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Bobby Allen Roach

Acting Director of Public Relations & Marketing; Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Officer