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An Eye for Design: How Madeline Eddy’s Creative Passions Propelled Her Studies at ATDM

Madeline Eddy

Born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, Madeline Eddy moved to Danville, Virginia, in early 2024 to study additive manufacturing at the Accelerated Training in Defense Manufacturing program. With a lifelong passion for art and design, Madeline was looking for hands-on career training that challenged her vocationally and allowed her to express her creativity. Before she graduates this June, we caught up with Madeline to ask about her experience at ATDM and learn more about her next move.

What interested you about additive manufacturing specifically?
I've always been a very creative person. With additive manufacturing, I’m doing a lot of designing. I've also done graphic design in the past. Being able to design stuff with CAD and turn a digital object into something physical is pretty cool.

What are the instructors like at ATDM?
My instructors are awesome at explaining the ins and outs of the business. They help us throughout our entire journey at ATDM, so no one gets left behind. If you don't understand something, you can meet with them one-on-one during or after class. I've done tutoring sessions for some of the concepts we were learning, and it’s really helped. The instructors are always reminding my cohort that they are there to help and want us to succeed.

What do you enjoy the most about your coursework at ATDM?
I like that there is some cross-training involved with other disciplines in manufacturing. It’s a fast-paced but well-rounded education that opens up opportunities for us. Additive manufacturing is just so new. In many places, people are either not learning about it or just getting started. So some of the jobs we'll be doing in the defense industrial base may require some CNC machining skills until the industry switches over.

Do you have any post-graduation plans?
I just accepted a position to work at Collins Aerospace in San Marcos, Texas. I'll be starting on July 15. I’m so excited! Moving to Danville and living on my own in a new state for the first time has been such a cool experience, and now I’m moving again to an entirely new place that I’ll get to explore.

What would you say to someone considering applying to ATDM?

I'd say do it. At first, I was hesitant, but this is a very unique opportunity. You don’t have to worry about housing or paying for school. There are a lot of resources to help you out with anything else that you need. If you want to further your career into something different or expand your skills in something you already know, then just go for it.

Interested in learning more? Apply online now or schedule a call with an advisor to learn more about how the ATDM program can help you in your career.