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EPISD students represent El Paso, win national drone competition

EL PASO, Texas -- While students are enjoying their summer vacation hanging out at home, playing video games, two EPISD students took their love of drone to new heights.

Adrian Vicario and Gabriel Alvarado spent part of their summer representing El Paso and the entire state of Texas at the Skills USA Commercial sUAS Done Competition in Atlanta.

The two Franklin students apart of EPISD's Career and Technical Education program beat out 13 other states with their drone.

From left to right: Adrian Vicario, David Alvarado, Gabriel Alvarado. Courtesy of David Alvarado.

"Gerome the Drone," as they call it, was built entirely from scratch. The two students spent about $400 of their own money to build it.

"I think both of us, as we became more interested in it, (drones) became our hobby outside of school," said Gabriel.

"It feels good," Adrian said. "We did something different than what the judges expected for us to do."

The pair had to show the judges how their drone could be used in real-world situations.

"These are aircraft that were built by them, the FAA views these as actual aircraft," said their teacher David Alvarado. "So it's really satisfying for these guys to pick up this skill and learn, and just take off."

Adrian will be heading to UTEP next year to student aerospace engineering, while Gabriel will be entering his senior year.

Gabriel said he hopes to bring home the gold once again next year.

Article Topic Follows: El Paso

Brianna Chavez

Brianna Chavez is an ABC-7 reporter/producer.

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