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Marines and sailors visited the 2nd Marine Division training center July 17 as part of an open house to show them the Unmanned Aircraft Systems that they would be learning to use in combat and training. With planes on display Marines were able to see what they would be flying, what the different specifications were for each plane and what they were designed for.

Photo by Courtesy Photograph

PMA-263 teaches Unmanned Aircraft Systems to Marines

14 Aug 2012 | Lance Cpl. Phillip R. Clark

Marines and sailors visited the 2nd Marine Division Training Center July 17 as part of an open house to show them the Unmanned Aircraft Systems they will use in combat and training.

            Instructors with PMA-263 discussed each aircraft and talked about how they are training Marines and units to use each system.

            “We are trying to make this training a one stop shop, so when Marines come here they are taught how to use and maintain their UAS,” said Kevin Adkins, the training activity administrator.

            One of the goals for the instructors is to be able to set up the logistics for the units so the Marines only have to show up and take advantage of the training.

            “One big thing we have been working on is being able to set up everything ourselves, so that when Marines want the training we tell them dates for the class and they show up and that’s all they have to worry about,” said Adkins.  “It takes a lot of the stress off the Marines when they don’t have to plan everything out and they can focus specifically on the training.”

            Col. James E. Rector, the UAS’ acquisition management professional, visited the open house and mentioned how beneficial the training has been.

            “We don’t say no to the war fighters.  We are here to support the war fighter and get them the training to make them safer and more combat efficient,” said Rector. “Phase one was to set up the program and now phase two is to make sure we take the burden off the units and get them the training to use these planes.”

            Through a positive effort and instructors who are willing to teach UAS operation, Marines can be better trained and more proficient in combat.

            “Were setting up the program here and then eventually moving another one to the west coast so there is proficient training in both places,” said Adkins.  “This training is great for the Marines and can potentially lead to saving lives in a combat environment.”
2nd Marine Division