Drones & Droids right here in the Northwest

AUVSI Cascade. Advocate, Educate, Connect

MOSES LAKE, WA – Drones, innovative electric propulsion systems, undersea robots and more will be the featured topics of the “Drones and Droids: Unmanned Systems at Work” symposium to be held April 11-12 at Big Bend Community College.  The Moses Lake event, hosted by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Cascade Chapter and Big Bend Community College, will include presentations by four state legislators, aviation leaders from Oregon and Washington, and nationally and regionally acclaimed experts in unmanned systems technologies and policy.  Additionally, drone operators and educators will discuss the latest operator regulatory policies as well as applications of unmanned technologies to agriculture, resource management, disaster response, infrastructure inspections and more here in the Northwest and worldwide.


Workforce development leaders will highlight changes to our education system and identify the careers that are growing as part of the $100 billion-dollar industry expected over the next 10 – 20 years here in the Northwest.  Most importantly, the 2-day symposium will host attendees from industry, government and academia in a valuable networking environment geared to the economic development of the Pacific Northwest.  According to Tom Hagen, President of the Cascade Chapter of AUVSI, “We have the technology and skilled workforce components that make our regional ecosystem in this market second to none in the country.  This conference will continue the engagement between government, industry and academia to realize our full potential in this space.  Equally important, this symposium offers something for everyone interested in unmanned systems, is open to the public, and welcomes students who have an interest in learning about and working in this dynamic new industry.”

Paul Peterson, CEO of Volta Companies in McMinnville, Oregon, will keynote the conference and speak to the rapidly emerging electric vehicle industry.  Volta efforts are all designed to help address environmental concerns and societal needs more efficiently and with less stress on our planet’s ecosystems.

Workshops for operators and those who wish to know more about the business aspects of unmanned systems are also an important part of the two-day agenda for the symposium.  Hands-on drone flying opportunities will be available for all participants in Big Bend’s outdoor Enclosed UAS Laboratory Facility, a large netted area used for drone operator training at the community college.  Attendees can learn firsthand from the speakers, other attendees and the several vendors who will be on site from a wide spectrum of business areas including law firms, insurance companies, custom parts manufacturers as well as platform and other service providers.

AUVSI members, first responders, and students are eligible for special discounts and one-day passes are also available at the symposium registration website:


About the AUVSI Cascade Chapter

The Cascade Chapter is one of over 35 chapters of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) and represents the states of Oregon and Washington.  Established in 2009, the chapter has rapidly grown as additional Unmanned Systems professionals learn about the many benefits of membership and now has over 400 members from industry, government and academia. The Cascade Chapter supports the objectives of AUVSI and serves its members through industry advocacy, community connections, and education initiatives such as our two regional conferences and various STEM initiatives.  The Chapter also coordinates other networking opportunities around the region.  For more information please visit http://www.auvsi.org/members/chapters/cascade-chapter .

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