Sally French is an unabashed drone lover. Selfie drones, video drones, delivery drones — you name it, she’s flown it. French is this generation’s Amelia Earhart and a personal hero to me as she’s smashing through glass ceilings one propeller at a time.

That’s why I support this woman’s work.

In honor of the upcoming International Drone Day on May 2, “This Woman’s Work” brings you Sally French, the creator of The Drone Girl website, where she writes and speaks about drones.

Sally French

Sally French (The Drone Girl photo)

French has presented at South by Southwest, Harvard Business School and InterDrone. She was also named one of Fortune’s “four top women shaping the drone industry.”

Randi Zuckerberg: How did you find your passion for drones?

Sally French: It found me! Seriously. I needed one more elective credit to graduate, and the only thing that fit in my schedule was a Monday afternoon “Drone Journalism” class. It was the first year of the class, so I didn’t know what it was, but I signed up and fell in love with it. After the class, I got my own drone and started writing about it.

RZ: What trends around flying robots surprise you most?

SF: I’m surprised how quickly it caught on. I’m less impressed by the trends and more impressed by the creative use cases. I’ll tell you two of my favorites.

First, there is an issue in some countries in Africa where elephants will come trample on people’s farms, so the farmers feel they have to shoot the elephants to protect their crops. It turns out elephants fear bees. Drones sound like bees, so now farmers have drones, and when they see an elephant, they fly the drone near it to scare the elephant the other direction. It’s a win-win.

My other favorite story involves scientists trying to get whale DNA, which is apparently hard to obtain. DNA exists in your snot, so when a whale surfaces to blow air out its air hole, a drone with a contraption on it hovers over the whale and opens the contraption to collect the snot (well, DNA) and fly it back to the scientist.

RZ: What do you see next in the future of drones?

SF: Sense and avoid technology is so important in making drone use in populated areas feasible. We won’t have urban drone delivery until drones can sense the moving world around them. What’s awesome is that one of the largest drone creators, DJI, just debuted a drone that has two sensors in front so it can see what’s ahead of it.

The next iteration of drones will have more (and smarter) sensors, meaning a future of deliveries, search and rescue missions, building inspections, window washing and more is that much closer.

RZ: If it passes, how badly will the necessity to have a pilot’s license hurt the drone industry?

SF: Currently, you need a (Federal Aviation Administration) Section 333 permit to fly a drone for commercial purposes. That permit requires that users have a pilot’s license, which prevents a lot of people from flying drones.

While it is important to know about airspace rules, the skills required to actually operate an airplane are much different than the skills required to own a drone. Flying a drone is more like playing a video game than anything.

Not to mention, the cost of getting a pilot’s license is high, which excludes a lot of entrepreneurs without starting capital to even operate commercially.

RZ: How can we better create a gender-neutral tech community?

SF: For being such a new industry, drones are really male-dominated, which is unfortunate because working in the field of drones doesn’t require any type of ability that a man would have but a woman wouldn’t. It’s funny you asked, because I’ve actually seen advertisements for two different drone conferences where the speaker lineup was 100 percent male.

Making tech more gender-neutral is on a lot of people, but I also think a lot of it is unconscious bias. When I was in the drone class, the student makeup was four male and four female students. Whenever we used the drone for projects, the professor only offered the men in the class a chance to fly it. He never said “women can’t fly,” but I think he assumed we wouldn’t want to or maybe weren’t as good pilots.

That’s really not fair, but I was too afraid to speak up and ask for my turn to fly. Ironically, none of the men in that class are still flying drones anymore, but a couple of the women are.

Randi Zuckerberg is the founder and CEO of Zuckerberg Media, a best-selling author and the host of a SiriusXM weekly tech business show, Randi Zuckerberg Means Business. Follow her on Twitter: @randizuckerberg or connect with her on Facebook. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are her own.