CAD Engineering Degree Program and Career Information

Computer-aided design (CAD) is utilized by engineers to turn drawings into blueprints for a finished product, such as tools, pipe and other things. CAD engineering technicians work hand in hand with designers, manufacturers and salespeople.

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Essential Information

An Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in CAD Technology teaches the student how to operate and manage CAD software, like SolidWorks or AutoCAD. These CAD systems enable engineers to draft and store drawings so that they can be seen, printed or programmed into automated manufacturing systems like computer numerical control (CNC) machines for fabrication.


CAD Engineering Degree Program

A CAD engineering student learns to design architectural and engineering drawings by taking technology-oriented coursework. Specializations include topics such as interpreting drawings and specifications, machining and blueprints. Enrollment in these two-year programs requires students to have a high school diploma and sufficient test scores. Course topics include:

  • CAD engineering drawing
  • CAD applications
  • Machining
  • Blueprints
  • Animation

Employment Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov), degree holders with a two year associate or technical degree in a CAD program have a better chance of getting a job. Experience drafting drawings in CAD and up-to-date technical skills, as well as training for leadership roles, may also make applicants more appealing to employers. Although outsourcing overseas has hurt domestic employment, part-time work and consulting jobs may be found through agencies and online. The median annual salary for a CAD engineer was $59,727 according to PayScale.com in October 2016.

Continuing Education

The two-year degree from a community college or technical school is the most common degree for a CAD engineer. Graduates may acquire jobs or pursue their education further. Most four-year colleges do not offer separate training in drafting technology. Students may pursue a bachelor's degree in such related subjects as engineering, architecture and mathematics.

Those interested in CAD can learn how to use the various technologies used to CAD engineering from an A.A.S. degree program in CAD technology. This degree will help prepare students for entry level employment in CAD or higher degree programs that would lead to better career options.

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