I recently purchase the student version of SolidWorks a few weekends ago and as a result decided that it might be a good time to start learning the program. The program is comparably easy to learn with tutorials to lead you through the basics and some advanced model making techniques like mold making and creating surfaces.
The thing I like most about this program would be the, life saving, feature tree which allows you to edit pretty much anything you have created in your model. Of course, you will have to rework some of what you have done but it's much better than making a whole new because someone didn't like the fillet size.
The other program I explored was Maxwell Studio by next limit. Amazing. I can't say enough good things about this program. With a online library of thousand of materials, adjustable optics to create unnatural camera effects like 200 focal lengths, the ability to edit the light setting after you have rendered and a incredible photo realism. I was able to start rendering in about 20min with the help of a preset studio.