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Strategic Plan

Pilot Flying UASProfessionalize – Stabilize – Standardize

Strategic Goal:  The UAS Training Program over the next five years, through investments in process and people, will work to close the gap between capacity and demand while solving for many unknowns allowing a program of work, experience, and lessons to inform agencies and decision-makers on programmatic and organizational exemplars to grow from.

Program Goals: (Draft UAS Training Strategic Plan 2022-2026)

Goal 1 – Prioritize interagency training needs through 2026.

Objective 1 – Acquire a needs assessment from the agencies indicating the total number of pilots to train and maintain

Objective 2 - Develop a five-year training plan to serve the interagency natural resource and wildland fire community.

Objective 3 – Develop a professional pathway for a UAS Pilot Corps.


Goal 2 – Train for success and speed to competency.

Objective 1 - Invest in the training process and personnel in a professional manner to provide dedicated mission-oriented staff to develop, deliver, mentor, and coach interagency UAS pilots by identifying funding and organizational boxes to host the program.


Goal 3 – Nationwide access to standardized UAS training

Objective 1 – Develop and/or identify training and education opportunities with colleges and private industry that meet department standards and accessibility to support anticipated interdisciplinary UAS needs.

Objective 2 – Provide pathway and crosswalk for recent graduates with degrees in unmanned aircraft systems to incorporate knowledge, skills, and abilities towards basic remote pilot and NWCG UAS qualifications.

Objective 3 – Maximize access and availability of approved standardized training to all land management agency employees nationwide.

Objective 4 – Enhance ability for small government to access department approved and endorsed standardized UAS training. 

  • Instill common experience, core competencies, and standardized performance expectations in addition to access and availability.
  • Opportunity to lead collaborative effort to establish an industry standard for professional pilots. Aligns with FAA UAS Collegiate Training Initiative (UAS-CTI).


Goal 4 – Learn from organizational experience.

Objective 1 – Implement a 12-month training cycle to include development, delivery, and field based experiential learning opportunities for the services.

Objective 2 – Exemplar. Demonstrate the service value and efficiencies of a dedicated UAS Training Program to inform the next phase of UAS growth programmatically and organizationally.


UAS Training Program Strategic Plan Diagram