A call to the women drone pilots - by Gabriella Fatigati
A security guard would think nothing of a short, unsuspecting teenager going through TSA in the airport as being a security threat, but little do they know that I carry a dangerous machine capable of bringing down a plane. Soon they will find my drone.
I purchased my handheld DJI Mavic Air drone half a year ago around Christmas, and since then, I have noticed a total lack of woman drone pilots. I have never met another woman pilot, but I have met four male pilots. All of the camera technicians and Best Buy nerd squad experts on drones I have met have been males. My only female pilot influence comes from social media where I see more women pilots, but still considerably less.
For a different demographic, I have only met one other young pilot and, not surprisingly, he is a boy. I’m sixteen and I meet him this year in high school and found that he became interested in drones from one of his family members who works in the aviation industry.
The only direct influence I’ve had with drones is from my best friend’s dad who also recently entered the drone field a few years ago. I first saw a drone in action when I saw him fly it on a joint-family vacation, and ever since then I saved up to buy a drone to enhance my photography. But I had to learn mostly all on my own and from YouTube tutorials.
So maybe it’s ok that it seems as though there are more male pilots than females, but the lack of young pilots still bothers me. Kids know more about technology than millennials and adults, I’ve seen elementary kids with iphones, so shouldn’t we be the ones leading the industry? It took me 10 minutes to buy my drone at Best Buy, 30 to set it up and read the instructions and about 2 minutes to get a hold of manoeuvring the drone with the remote once I started flying. Now imagine how fast kids who play video games and build their own robots and computers could set it up and start flying.
Still, there is the large cost of buying a drone. Drones with cameras are on the high side around $1000 and upward for a high resolution drone with a camera, but there are smaller drones with no cameras under $100- even toy helicopters. If kids save up for a year, do some chores, get a job and ask their parents to pay for part of the cost (which is what I did), they can buy a drone.
The FAA requires kids to be 13 years old to register their drone with the government, which is good to make sure kids are old enough to safely and responsibly fly, and the registration process is also easily done online and costs an inexpensive $5.
Now, I don’t want every kid to have a drone (because that would be chaos) but I do think younger teenagers should be encouraged to pursue droning if they are interested. I feel as though only young adults or millennials are seen piloting on social media, at least on all of the drone accounts I have stocked. On the other end of the spectrum, I have also not seen any older pilots. Maybe they just don’t have social media or have no interest in flying, I’m not sure, but I do know that I’ll be flying my drone when I’m old and walking hurts.
So, I want to encourage anyone with a passion in drones, photography or who wants to just having fun flying to pursue buying a drone and learning to fly safely. It’s 2019, I want to see more teenage female drone pilots!
Redactor : Gabriella Fatigati
Gabriella Fatigati is a 16 year old young woman rising high school senior living in central Florida, USA. She is an editor at her school’s yearbook staff and love to take photojournalistic and artistic photos. In her free time, she flies her DJI Mavic Air drone, scuba dives, takes underwater pictures, travels and explore her surroundings.
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