TDS National Apprenticeships - Frequently Asked Questions


The application for our 2019 Pre-Apprenticeship, and 2019-2022 Commercial Drone Pilot Apprenticeship and Commercial Drone Software Developer Apprenticeship cohorts, opens on November 5, 2018, and closes on December 5, 2018.

There are three phases of the application process. By December 8th, those who successfully move on from the initial phase, will be notified, as will those who are not accepted for the initial cohort. During the second phase, phone interviews will be conducted on December 12th, 2018 from 9am-5pm CST. During the last phase, those who have been selected will be notified by email, as will those who have not been formally accepted by December 17, 2018 at 12pm CST.

We will accept no more than 8 Pre-Apprentices per track, and no more than 8 Apprentices total, per program (i.e., CDP or CDSD), per site. Classes will begin on January 11th, 2018. Program availability is dependent upon student participation at each site. Scheduling may subject to change per site. Current sites are as follows:

  • Omaha, NE

  • Fremont, NE

  • Kansas City, MO

  • Washington, DC

Waiting List: Those that are not able to attend the initial cohorts beginning in January, will have the option of being placed on a national waiting list. Those on the waiting list will have priority for future cohorts.


Applicants are encouraged, but not required to attend the Pre-Apprenticeship training, prior to entering into the Apprenticeship Program. Those who have completed Pre-Apprenticeship modules, will be given consideration regarding their prior training towards Apprenticeship placement. Those who have background experience in relevant fields, or have completed prior programming, will be given credit for such experience toward the fulfillment of Apprenticeship requirements for programmatic completion.

Applicants may only apply for consideration for one program at a time. For example, one may only participate in the Pre-Apprenticeship Program, Commercial Drone Pilot Apprenticeship Program, or the Commercial Drone Software Developer Program, but not more than one at any one time.

The Pre-Apprenticeship Program is 6-9 months. The Commercial Drone Pilot Program is 3 years in length. The Commercial Drone Software Developer Program is 2.75 years in length.

Employers are responsible for training costs, not including the Pre-Apprenticeship, which may or many not be covered by workforce development funding opportunities, depending upon each persons situation. However, please contact us at to discuss in detail any questions you may have concerning funding. The cost of each Pre-Apprenticeship module is $3,300 currently. The Commercial Drone Pilot Apprenticeship is $32,000, to be paid in three installments over 3 years. The Commercial Drone Software Developer Apprenticeship is $52,000, also to be paid in three installments over 2.75 years. Partial scholarships for the Pre-Apprenticeship Program only, are also available for those who qualify.

Program participants, also must at least be 16 years of age, and thus eligible to sit for the FAA Remote Pilot Aeronautical Knowledge Examination.

Programming is subject to change per regulatory compliance at the Federal, State, and/or municipal level.


Who are we looking for? We are looking for a diverse group of applicants, from all walks of life, who are dedicated and hard workers, and are willing to take on the unknowns of cutting-edge technologies.

Each program has rigorous time-commitments, for example, each Pre-Apprenticeship module requires 6-hours per week of in-class time. Apprenticeship Programs require varying hours depending upon the program selected, however, both programs also require additional on-the-job training exercises and assignments to be completed as well. If you are selected, please inform you family of such a time commitment.

What if you live in a place that is not near one of our four physical locations? You may choose to be placed on a national waiting list, along with your resume, and work with I8I staff to be placed with an employer, at one of our existing sites, with a relocation package to be sought and negotiated on behalf of the apprentice. Additionally, the applicant may also choose to bring together at least 4 other interested persons to request a new training site, while taking into consideration the lag of a possible 3-6 months of processing time for regulatory compliance in your state.

How many apprentices will be accepted at each site? No more than 8 Pre-apprentices in each track will be accepted in one cohort. Also, no more than 8 apprentices will be accepted in each of the two Apprenticeship Programs at any one time.


Graduates of the Pre-Apprenticeship and Apprenticeship Programs will be knowledgeable specialists cutting-edge technology sectors. Apprentices also gain free tuition per Sponsoring Employers. Applicants who do not have Sponsoring Employers, may request assistance from I8I and/or the International Drone Federation for placement.

Pre-Apprentices will also receive certificates of completion for each track by Infinite 8 Institute. Graduating Apprentices, also will receive a certificate of completion from the United States Department of Labor.

Any further questions, please contact us at info@infinite8institute, or give us a call at our Headquarters, located in Omaha, Nebraska at 402-550-1876.