“I haven’t got a college degree, and my question is…”

Feedback in:

Hello Mr. Covel!

My name is [Name]. I’m a frequent listener of your podcast and I was wondering if you could give me a piece of advice.

I’m 20 years old and I just moved to London, I have no former experience in finance or the markets but for the past two years I decided that I wanted to be a trader and have started to read many books about the markets and finance (including yours, except trend following which I haven’t read yet).

I haven’t got a college degree, and my question is: Should I go to college and get an economics degree or should I try to get a job at an hedge fund?

I don’t know anybody that works in the industry so I would need to go “knock on doors” and ask for one and because I’m not formally qualified I am more than willing to work for free for whatever time necessary, serving coffee or whatever is needed.

The other option is to go to college but I have seen interviews with great traders like Stanley Druckenmiller and Paul Tudor Jones, who went to college in the University of Virginia but it seems that his real market education was with Eli Tullis who he did serve coffee for like he said in the documentary trader where he basically called the 1987 crash. Jones also said in a interview, which I quote; “While I’m a staunch advocate of higher education, there is no training — classroom or otherwise — that can prepare for trading the last third of a move, whether it’s the end of a bull market or the end of a bear market. There’s typically no logic to it; irrationality reigns supreme, and no class can teach what to do during that brief, volatile reign. The only way to learn how to trade during that last, exquisite third of a move is to do it, or, more precisely, live it — a sort of baptism by fire. One has to experience both the elation and fear as markets move five and six standard deviations from conventional definitions of value”.

And economists like Peter Schiff who basically says that college are a waste of time and money and gives pretty good arguments and shows good evidence of why that is…

Since you are a very successful entrepreneur and have interviewed great traders, fund managers and award winning economist over the years and have written several books about the markets: Is it a ridiculous idea to ask if you could give me your advice to what path should you think I should follow?

Thank you very much for your books and podcast! Thank you for taking the time to read this email!

Best Regards,


1. Read Linchpin by Seth Godin.

2. Read this.

3. Read Unlimited Power by A. Robbins.

4. Read my favorite books.

5. Listen to my podcast (all).

6. Read my 5th edition.

The Author