My experiences at Action Drone have really taught me that whatever major in college you go into can give you skills that will help you later on in a job. Seeing my mentor be the CEO of this company and know everything he knows about drones and learning that he does not have an engineering degree, taught me that passion is very important to success. My mentor was able to use his business background along with his passion to form Action Drone. I always had a sense that if you go and major in a certain field you need to stick to doing that exact major but I learned that in reality you can go anywhere you like and enjoy working, of course his schooling in business really helps the marketing side of business. Working at Action Drone has made me want to be a mechanical engineer even more and I can't wait to go to a university and learn everything there is to learn about mechanical engineering. My mentor has joked around and said that after I graduate from college he’s stealing me and making me work for him. (Of course in reality this would be a dream come true for me because I've always wanted to go into robotics!)
I had the opportunity to interview my mentor yesterday; I asked him some questions about the company and his work there. When I asked him how he ended up getting into drones and how he came up with the idea of running a drone company, he responded by saying, “it was something I always loved to do”. RC vehicles were something he was always into and after he would get out of work he would always mess around with RC vehicles. Since working with RC vehicles was something he had fun doing, he did often. After realizing the many applications that drones could be used for and how much he enjoyed working with drones he decided to start ACTION DRONE USA. The company has been up and running for 1 year and 6 months. I also asked Darryl, my mentor, what he enjoys most about working at Action Drone. He told me that making/building/designing is something that he loves doing and did before as a hobby and now that he gets paid for doing what he loves, he explained, “It’s a dream come true”. Next I asked him if there was anything that he wished he realized when he was my age that he realizes now. Darryl went on to talk about the importance of a balanced IQ and EQ and also the importance of networking. He said that it's important to expand our network with people and get to know as many people as possible. After that he went on to say how it doesn't matter how smart you are if you can't collaborate and be able to talk with people; without those skills, you won't be able to get higher and more important positions. The stuff you learn at school and university will only take you so far and you will always need to learn new information. As Darryl said “Strive for being perfect but never be it.” For the last question, I asked him what is the goal he has for Action Drone and when does he think he’ll reach it, if he hasn't already. He wants Action Drone to be immersed into society and help the world out. He wants the drones his company makes to help and improve the world in a positive way, whatever way possible. However, not only improve does he want the drones to improve the world for people but he wants them to improve the earth too.
For my internship I have a couple projects that I am carrying out. One is a presentation about the basics of drones. This presentation shares the main components that make up a drone and the function of each one of them. This presentation will help me learn about the drones but can also be used to explain how drones work to potential customers. Many of the customers who would want a drone for industrial use do not know how one works. The presentation I am developing will give an overview on the basics of how drones work. Another project that I am working on for the company is starting to build the AD2 drone. The AD2 drone will be a prototype of a bigger and better version of the AD1 drone, the drone they have right now. The AD2 drone will be really big compared to the AD1 drone and it will be able to have insane flight times and therefore will interest many customers, from both commercial and industrial companies. My last and probably biggest project was the translation of their AD1 manual. This project took me more time than I ever imagined but I learned so much.
Today my workday started very early for me. After staying up yesterday night researching for hours all the components of a drone I had to be at the warehouse the next day (today) at 7:15. I had to get to the warehouse at 7:15 because we were going to be filming at the Eastlake Golf Course starting at 7:30. We had to go early to make sure no golfers were in the way of our filming. The golf course let us borrow golf carts and I got to drive one for the first time, which was a really cool experience. The process for filming goes a little like this: First, drive to the first hole tee-off; second, take the drone and FPV tripod and set it down where the tee-off is located; third, set up and do an all pre-flight check, including turning on the GoPro; fourth, fly the drone from the tee-off to the hole a couple times to get good footage. We were able to film many holes and got some amazing footage. When we got back we got a little sidetracked with a modded RC truck, we started to drive around the warehouse and parking lot with it. We hooked up a First Person View System (FPV),which are usually used when flying the drones, onto the truck, making it possible to drive the truck all over the warehouse and parking lot without needing to see the truck itself. We even jokingly drove below our own cars to inspect them. This week went by way too fast, getting to know my mentor and colleagues while learning and being around drones; I cant wait to see what's in store for next week.
Today was my first day at my internship with Action Drone USA. It was a blast! My mentor and the people at Action Drone are really nice and super chill and they helped me get up to date with everything that was going on with the company. Today at Action Drone USA we did some test flying of the drones and took some video footage of the test flights too. When we got back from flying, they put me on the simulator to teach me how to fly a drone, so that later I will be able to fly the drones. When working at the warehouse everyone is having a good time as they work on the drones. My mentor is the CEO of the company. It is a small company so my mentor helps design, build, market, and test fly the drones. I am really excited for the next days to come and cannot wait to get behind the controls and fly a drone myself.