MEET THE PRO: Whitney Brandon, CAD/CAM Drafter

By Arkansas Next on Monday, October 25, 2021

Jacob Slaton

Hometown: Russellville
Age: 25

Where I trained: Arkansas State University–Beebe

Where I earned: Associate degree in computer-aided drafting and design

Job title: CAD drafter
Employer: Julian & Sons of Heber Springs

Whitney Brandon brings customers’ visions to life every day by designing their dream cabinetry as a CAD drafter. Whitney chose this career path because it allows her to tap into her creative side while helping people bring their desired projects to life. Her daily routine includes taking a concept that had been drawn on paper and putting it into AutoCad, which creates a visual for the customer to approve. Once the proof is approved, she then places the individual cabinets into iX for a 3D drawing.

Training enabled Whitney to jump into her career in just two years and gain invaluable experience. Whitney says that because Julian & Sons is an international company, her work can be seen worldwide. Whitney also likes that her job gives her the opportunity to make a customer’s dream turn into a reality. “I like that I get to make customers’ dream cabinets come to life,” she says. “I get to see a whole room come to life on my screen and see how it would be enjoyed.”

"One of the many benefits of this program is the much shorter duration — at only two years of study — while leading to the same certification that many bachelor’s degree holders obtain." –Whitney

Jacob Slaton


CAD drafters bring concepts to life by creating a visual for customers through AutoCad. After concepts are approved, the drafter puts the individual cabinets into iX for a 3D drawing. From this, blueprints and cut-lists are created for the shop. A CAD drafter can do much more than cabinetry. They are involved in many types of projects, from house plans and major department store layouts, to aeronautics.


  • Create accurate renderings of customer ideas
  • Meet with the shop foreman, CAD designer and installers to answer any questions
  • Verify that the installation will work efficiently

Education needed: Associate degree in computer-aided drafting and design

Job Outlook

► 330 jobs in Arkansas by 2028

► 30 average annual job openings in Arkansas

This option is for you if

  • You are creative
  • You have an artistic eye
  • You are great at communication
  • You have an eye for the details
  • You are accurate and efficient

High-end earners in Arkansas (top 10%) make

Median wages in Arkansas
$49,020 Annual
$23.57 Hourly

• Arkansas State University–Beebe
• Arkansas State University–Mountain Home
• Arkansas State University–Newport
• Arkansas Tech University–Ozark
• East Arkansas Community College
• National Park College
• Simmons Foods
• University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville
• University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton
• University of Arkansas-Pulaski Technical College

• ABB Motors & Mechanical Inc.
• Central Moloney Inc.
• Hytrol
• McGeorge Contracting Company
• McKee Foods Corporation
• Pace Industries
• Simmons Foods