Workforce Education

Careers Using Computer Aided Design

Engineers, designers, and drafters commonly rely a great deal on computer-aided design (CAD) technology.  Designers and engineers research, develop, design, manufacture, and test tools, engines, machines, and other mechanical devices, including computer hardware. Career opportunities exist in production operations in manufacturing, research and development, agriculture, maintenance, or technical sales. Drafters prepare technical plans and drawings used in production of parts, tools, machinery, models, etc. CAD systems are used to create and store the component and assembly 3D models and generate 2D drawings and plans.  This electronic information can then be viewed, manipulated, revised, printed, and reused.

Employment Outlook

The California Employment Development Department (EDD) collects data about the state’s workforce. These data include information about the number of people employed in the field, job outlook, and wage information. The California EDD predicts for the period 2008-2018 the number of openings for engineering drafters to increase by 2%. In addition, there will be significant number of annual openings due to retirements. For more detailed information about positions in the computer-aided design field, check the California Occupational Guide for the occupations listed below:

  • Electrical and Electronics Drafters (SOC 17-3012)
  • Mechanical Drafters (SOC 17-3013)
  • Mechanical Engineering Technicians (SOC 17-3027)
Necessary Education and Skills for Career Success

Close up of CAD drawing on computer monitorExperience using current CAD systems is essential for employment in fields such as design and engineering. A background in mathematics and scientific principles is important for those performing engineering and design work. Traits that help engineers, for example, to succeed are inquisitiveness, analytical thinking, creativity, and attention to details. They should be able to work as part of a team and to communicate well, both orally and in writing.  Individuals planning a career using CAD systems should possess good sketching and drawing abilities that they can apply with the CAD application.

General Info About the Program

De Anza College's CAD program is highly regarded throughout the country for its expert instruction and quality range of courses to meet students' needs.  Both certificates and an associate degree are offered.  Day and evening class times are available.  Presently, PTC's Creo Parametric and SolidWorks CAD design packages are taught in the program.

Computer Aided Design Certificate and Degree Programs

The following links open in .pdf. Adobe PDF icon

Certificates of Achievement:

For more information contact the CAD Department
Business, Computer Science, and Applied Technologies Division
De Anza L14
(408) 864-8796,8797

Workforce Education
Contact: Margaret Bdzil
Phone: 408.864.8937

Last Updated: 11/6/13