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Training Students To Become Engineers  
TVA’s CADNet Program Helps Students Across Tennessee Valley

​TVA's CADNet program trains high school students in computer-aided drafting (CAD), a skill particularly useful in the field of structural and electrical engineering. The program helps students earn valuable work experience and technical training so they can better compete in the workforce of the future.

The program started in 1995 with three students in Knoxville, Tennessee. Today more than 10,000 students from 42 high schools and five colleges across Tennessee Valley have participated.

In addition to the benefit of real-world training, the program also pays high school students to work on computer drawings for TVA. In fact, many students continue working in the program after they graduate from high school, participating in TVA’s college intern program.

“The TVA CADNet program was a godsend,” said Kellie Keith, a former-student enrolled in the program. “If I hadn’t been exposed to CADNet, I wouldn’t have thought about being an engineer at all. This program gave me a career. And a good one.” Keith is now an electrical engineer in TVA’s Telecom Planning and Standards group.

Janice Horn, the school-to-work supervisor at CADNet, is proud of TVA's commitment to the community and to providing kids with the support they need to have a career in engineering. "For me, it is all about giving back to the students and helping them develop,” she said. "We are here to support students in what they want to do, and I love seeing them succeed."

An original version of this story appeared on TVA.com.