An entrepreneur at 23: Brandon Trentalange and his rising business with Drones

Brandon Trentalange
Brandon Trentalange

Success in doing business knows no age. All it takes is a one-of-a-kind pitch, hard work, and dedication to making it happen. What started as a passion, transformed into an entrepreneurial venture for 23-year-old Brandon Trentalange. His interest in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), aka drones, has made him a trailblazer in the industry with the launch of his online drone school. 

Drones have become a game-changer in industries like construction, agriculture, roof inspection, and surveying as they provide actionable information with a quick flight and the touch of a button, in just minutes. The ability to deploy a drone on a construction site, and digitize a process that has predominantly consisted of pen and paper is changing the way companies do business. This rising demand for drones is what Brandon wanted to cater to his online drone school, Altitude University. 

Altitude University was established as an advanced training platform for drone industry professionals. They cater to a highly specialized niche in the market by providing an online course curriculum for individuals and corporations interested in acquiring their FAA Drone Pilot’s License. Brandon Trentalange is the CEO and Founder of one of the largest online drone schools in recent years. His business has so far assisted over 3,000 individuals to become certified drone pilots and has helped numerous students secure high paying aviation-related jobs.

Advanced classes will soon be available for commercial sectors like agriculture, construction, surveying, inspection, and cinematography. Not only do they supply the necessary education to help their students understand this technology, but Brandon also assists his clients in finding employment with high-value services now in demand in various industries.

Five years ago, Brandon, as a high school student, had already worked with some of the top luxury real estate agents in Southern California. It was in the years 2015-2018 before they launched Altitude when he and his team assisted large companies from various fields to digitize their workflows using aerial photogrammetry and data analysis. They provided high-quality aerial imagery for corporations such as Cushman & Wakefield, Coastal Premier Properties, Syngenta, BrightView Development, Irvine Company, and have even collaborated with individuals from NASA, and Caltech’s Jet propulsion laboratory. He’s also worked with professional athletes who currently ride for Monster Energy, and compete in XGames. 

Brandon’s interest in drones transformed into a business venture tells an exciting story. Way back, he got a chance to be a part of a construction project in Irvine, California. He noticed that civil engineers and project managers do it old school by walking over the entire 250 acres of land using pen and paper to document their data. Although he was new to the technology, he knew that this process can dramatically be expedited, still with the needed accuracy through the use of drones. Construction projects will then be completed by mounting professional-grade cameras and other survey equipment to the drone. This innovation would productively enhance site visibility and speed up the survey period, progress reporting, and even their inspection processes. Workers are also kept safe as they are less exposed to occupation-related hazards.

For eight months, they consistently did aerial surveys over the area. Noticeable changes were seen as communication significantly improved with live annotations, and the entire duration of the process reduced through real-time visual monitoring of earthwork progress. These remarkable developments made an executive from another construction firm approach Brandon to ask him if his team can also be trained to use drones. This encounter eventually sparked the idea for Brandon to create his drone pilot training program. His business was timely because primarily, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) required on August 29, 2016, under its rules that a Part 107 Drone License and a Remote Pilot Certificate is needed for any person paid to fly drones and its related services. Secondarily, there is a growing demand for certified drone pilots to provide specialized services for industry professionals onsite. 

“What I’ve found is that the regulations keep changing, and the full-time drone pilots with real-world experience haven’t sat down to create an in-depth course curriculum that would prepare you to enter the industry once you’ve received your license,” said Brandon. Now with Altitude University, he looks forward to creating a future community of like-minded remote pilots using drone technology to help our environment and disrupt traditional-now-inefficient workflows. 

Brandon and his team at Altitude University are overseeing projects throughout Southern CA in both scientific aerial imaging and ground sensor data. The Altitude Pilot Community and its partners are also geared to create jobs for drone pilots across the country by providing topographical land analysis surveys, building inspections, and 3D modeling. These services make use of industry-standard software such as AutoCad, CivilCad, and GIS systems, as well as pioneering upgrades in Building Information Modeling.  

For the past five years, Brandon Trentalange has been continuously involved in the drone industry. When he’s not working on the weekends, he enjoys flying his DJI Inspire 2 for fun, Brandon continues to stay ahead of trends with his work in the drone industry. Brandon’s goal is to advance the knowledge of certified drone pilots in this emerging industry, so we can change the way people view drones for good.

Indeed, age is not a barrier in clinching that prized success in business. In this 21st century, innovation in technology will surely be a gamechanger in the market. Drones and Brandon’s Altitude University is only the start of it. See their drone pilot training on their website: Check out the life of its young CEO and Founder Brandon Trentalange through their Instagram