Advice requested on a major career change into Quantitative Finance

Hello everyone,

I have been browsing this forum for a few weeks now and just joined today and I have to say I am very impressed with how helpful and supportive everyone is. I apologize for the lengthy post but I hope some of you can offer me some guidance.

I recently decided to make a major career change into quantitative finance and I am hoping to get advice on the best way to accomplish this goal. Based on my background I expect that this could be a rather lengthy process, but I am sure it will be worth it.

Here is my background:

I spent two years at the US Air Force Academy where majored in Astronautical Engineering and excelled in all of my quantitative coursework. I then chose to leave the Air Force and transferred to the University of Colorado at Boulder where my scholastic achievement suffered badly due to my lack of maturity and commitment at the time. I ultimately graduated with a mediocre GPA, a degree in Economics and a minor in Business.

During my senior year I founded a company called NightRiders which provided designated drivers on demand to customers who were too drunk to drive. ( if you're curious) We garnered a lot of positive press coverage, won some awards, grew the company to over 40 people, raised some capital, and ultimately ran out of money after 4 years in operation.

In 2006, realizing that I wanted to get into finance, I started in the CFA program. I passed Levels I and II on my first attempt and I am scheduled to take Level III in June. I also took a job in 2006 with a management consulting company where I started as a Business Analyst and recently moved into the internal finance department. I am hoping to use my success in the CFA program to break into the investment industry.

Here are my questions:

1.) To be able to get into a decent MFE program, do I need to go back to school to obtain an undergraduate degree in Math to demonstrate appropriate academic achievement? Or, would excellent test scores coupled with completion of the necessary prerequisite courses be sufficient?

2.) What type of position should I be targeting in my current job search to best get me heading down this career path?

3.) Lastly, will it be next to impossible to find such a position in the Denver, CO market where I currently live?

Thanks in advance to all of you for your help with this. I sincerely appreciate your feedback. :prayer:


Gary Calnan
Aspiring Quant
Your profile is remarkably similar to this
As for the number of jobs in Denver, CO it's pretty simple to find out
Go to
Enter CO into the location box and press search, there are 7 total positions when I did.
Enter NY and there are 1458 positions.

It's one of the job boards out there but it's a good indicator. You make the comparison.