North Dakota students learn how to build drone businesses

Markets Associated Press

  • In this Sept. 28, 2016 photo, students in the first drone business course at the University of North Dakota sit in front of a table of unmanned aircraft and listen to North Dakota State University researcher John Nowatzki talk about his project to use large drones for precision agriculture in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The class is teaching students first to fly drones and then develop a business plan that they will present to venture capitalists and executives. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack)

    In this Sept. 28, 2016 photo, students in the first drone business course at the University of North Dakota sit in front of a table of unmanned aircraft and listen to North Dakota State University researcher John Nowatzki talk about his project to ... use large drones for precision agriculture in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The class is teaching students first to fly drones and then develop a business plan that they will present to venture capitalists and executives. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack) (The Associated Press)

  • In this Sept. 28, 2016 photo, students in the first unmanned aircraft business class at the University of North Dakota fly a drone outside the school. In addition to learning how to fly the aircraft, the students are receiving real-world business experience and will end the semester by presenting their ideas for a business to executives.There are 24 students in the inaugural class that is part of the college's business school. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack)

    In this Sept. 28, 2016 photo, students in the first unmanned aircraft business class at the University of North Dakota fly a drone outside the school. In addition to learning how to fly the aircraft, the students are receiving real-world business ... experience and will end the semester by presenting their ideas for a business to executives.There are 24 students in the inaugural class that is part of the college's business school. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack) (The Associated Press)

  • In this Sept. 28, 2016 photo, This drone being flown by University of North Dakota students hovers over an aerospace building in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The flying session was part of the school's first drone business class that is meant to show students what it will take to further their unmanned aircraft careers. One student calls the class a "game-changer" and another believes it will help him launch a drone business. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack)

    In this Sept. 28, 2016 photo, This drone being flown by University of North Dakota students hovers over an aerospace building in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The flying session was part of the school's first drone business class that is meant to show ... students what it will take to further their unmanned aircraft careers. One student calls the class a "game-changer" and another believes it will help him launch a drone business. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack) (The Associated Press)

One of the leading aviation schools in the country has added a new class to its curriculum: a drone business course.

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The 24 students in the University of North Dakota class are not only learning how to fly drones, they are receiving real-world business experience. At the end of the semester the will pitch their enterprise ideas to venture capitalists and executives in a "Shark Tank" setting.

One of the students, Blaire Beecham, says she discovered a passion for drones late in a collegiate career that had her bouncing between UND and Texas Christian University. She calls the class a "game-changer" for her career.

Beecham's team is working on designing and building a bubble or a shield around drones so they can fly underground or in tunnels.