Today's advanced manufacturing sector is a highly-skilled, high-wage field built around sophisticated machines and software. In Orange County, it is also the third largest employer (along with the energy, construction, and utilities sector).

To meet demand, Saddleback's Advanced Manufacturing program prepares students to work closely with engineers, designers, and professionals in multiple industries using additive and subtractive processes for product development, 3D visualization, art, entertainment, architecture, and medical modeling. Classroom work is combined with project-based learning labs to give students the hands-on experience they need to enter the workforce as product designers, rapid prototyping technicians, model makers, CNC programmers, and more!

Degrees and Certificates

Employment Opportunities

The American manufacturing sector is growing for the first time in many years. Approximately 500,000 Advanced Manufacturing jobs have been created in the past three years and reversed the trend of declining employment in this sector. The overall job growth in the Advanced Manufacturing sector is projected to be 47 percent; and, the most number of job openings will be for CNC Machine Operators, Quality Control Inspectors/Supervisors, and CAD/CAM Designer positions. To be successful, students need to be skilled and master the use of sophisticated machines and software for Subtractive and Additive Manufacturing. These Advanced Manufacturing openings are Highly Skilled - High Wage jobs that demand intermediate to advanced hands on skill level training to gain employment.

  • Product Designer
  • Rapid Prototyping Technician
  • Architectural Model Maker
  • Medical Model Maker 
  • CNC Machine Programmers, Metal and Plastic​
  • Industrial Engineers
  • Model Makers, Metal and Plastic
  • Mechanical Engineers
  • Biomedical Engineers
  • Rapid Prototyping Technologist

Careers and Salaries

  • Geographic Information System Technician: $102,870
  • Commercial/Industrial Designer: $80,620
  • Electronic Drafter: $65,230
  • Architectural/Civil/Mechanical Drafter: $62,350
  • Model Maker: $51,700

Contact the Advanced Manufacturing Department