Area Students Explore Careers at Catawba Nuclear Station

Last year, when a local Clover, S.C., high school parent asked the Catawba Nuclear Station vice president if the station offered a high school internship, he had no idea his question would lead to a career exploration day for his son and other students interested in nuclear.

Area Students Explore Careers at Catawba Nuclear Station
Area students learn about the control room on this glass top simulator.

Duke Energy does offer summer internships … for college students. To bridge that gap, on March 11, 2016, employees at Catawba Nuclear Station hosted the first career exploration day for high school juniors and seniors from three local schools, as well as local homeschool students. This event connected students interested in STEM and nuclear careers with plant employees working in science and engineering fields.

The event was set up speed-dating style, where students visited 12 career stations staffed by plant employees for 10 minutes each.

School counselors and advisors at the schools handpicked the students that had previously expressed an interest in a STEM or nuclear career.

Catawba’s Career Exploration Day
Students learn about radiation protection at Catawba’s Career Exploration Day.

“The message was ‘spot on’ regarding preparation, education and job roles,” said one school administrator.

Plant employees volunteered to staff the 12 career stations. The careers explored were nuclear engineering, civil engineering, radiation protection, environmental science, finance, mechanical maintenance, instrumentation and controls maintenance, supply chain, chemistry and operations (with a tour of the station control room simulator).

With a large percentage of the nuclear workforce set to retire in the next 5-10 years, getting high school students interested in STEM and nuclear careers is paramount. And, events like this are a step in the right direction.


Catawba employees share their career experiences with local area students.

“You’ve left the impression it’s a healthy, positive environment and the employees enjoy interesting, meaningful and challenging work,” said one of the homeschool teachers. “The staff work well together and have many career development opportunities open to them.”

So, what about that Clover parents' son? He attended the event and now wants to study engineering at a local technical school.

Comments (8)

Posted January 29, 2020 by Ellen Morton
Hi David! Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate this request for safety reasons.
Posted January 29, 2020 by David graves
My school does job shadow days i was wondering is there a way to job shadow someone there as a middle school kid.
Posted September 13, 2019 by Shawna Berger
Thank you for reaching out. Someone will reach out to you.
Posted September 13, 2019 by Susan Fields
South Pointe High School STEAM Chemistry teachers would like to bring out students to Catawba for a tour and to learn what careers are available/education needed. Could someone please contact me? Thank you!
Posted May 02, 2019 by Duke Energy
Hi David, Someone from Catawba will be contacting you via email to discuss options for your class. Thanks for reaching out!
Posted April 24, 2019 by David Dudley
Do you have tours of Catawba Plant? My students have been reading Voices from Chernobyl, and I was hoping that we could get an opportunity to visit Catawba. We are located at Indian Land High School in Indian Land, SC. My class has 14 students. Thank you for your consideration. David Dudley
Posted May 17, 2018 by Christine Pulley
We're not aware of any at the moment, however, please continue to refer to the Duke Energy career page for updates.
Posted May 02, 2018 by Marla Price
I was wondering when the next class for nuclear operator or chemistry operator would be hiring. I have looked on the career page and haven't see any recently. Thanks, Marla Price

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