Real Estate To Algorithmic Trading: A Professional’s Journey

3 min read

People consider it a challenge trying to pursue their ambitions a few years into their career and “adjusting” themselves. It is a challenge but not impossible.

It takes the best of our qualities to push ahead, re-invent ourselves for the future and to keep moving. A beautiful example would be that of Jim who was a Real Estate Agent for 2 decades, kept changing streams in his academics, and ultimately found his calling in the form of the profession of Finance.

He simply did not give up. He found out the best possible way to be a part of Algorithmic Trading, approached EPAT® and is now an Algorithmic Trader.

For someone knowing the in and out of Realty for years, today, he is established in his field of choosing - Finance.

He is a beacon for all those aspiring Quants out there boldly stating that no matter what profession you’re from, if you have a basic understanding of the domain you want to be in and have a course like EPAT to guide, motivate and help you achieve success, it is never impossible to achieve what you want.

We bring you a few words from him about his journey and his pursuit of his dreams.

Our Conversation With Jim Woodward

Tell us about Yourself

I live in Los Angeles, California and I am currently a Real Estate agent specializing in the commercial real estate. I’ve been in this profession for the last 20 years. I work for a small brokerage firm that allows me the flexibility to branch off and contribute in many different areas. I’ve been a lifelong learner; have attended multiple Universities and have varied my field of study many times from Mathematics to Finance to Programming.

Real Estate is interesting but I really aspired to be in Finance, preferably with a small hedge fund, or a private equity group or a trading group. This is what prompted me to investigate the educational options in algorithmic trading and that’s how I came to get acquainted with QuantInsti.

What were the difficulties that you faced while becoming an Algo Trader and how did you overcome them?

The greatest challenge that I faced was overcoming the obstacle that I thought all quants were Ph. D.’s in Mathematics or Quantitative Finance and that it was beyond my reach. After speaking with representatives from QuantInsti and former students I was convinced that this was not the case and that with the right curriculum, hard work and dedicated studies I could become a quant. That is how I approached the EPAT curriculum.

I learned about EPAT by searching online and filling out the “Yes, I’m Interested” form. I was contacted by Pawan Mer and he and I had a few conversations about the curriculum, if it was right for me and if I was qualified for the curriculum. He also put me in contact with former students for their perspective. Shortly after communicating with a few of the former students I realized and decided that EPAT was for me.

How would you describe your learning experience?

My learning experience was outstanding. Being self-paced and online provided the flexibility to study at any time and for any length of time. Also having the lectures recorded afforded the luxury of going back and re-watching it. I did this quite a few times and every time I learned something new that I had missed the previous time.

The faculty and support staff was very responsive to any questions that I had. The questions that I posed were answered fully and with great detail. I thought this was a tremendous benefit to have the comfort of knowing that I could ask any question and get an answer very quickly.

How has your life changed after EPAT?

Completing EPAT instils a lot of confidence that in a fairly short period of time I completed a rigorous curriculum and learned an incredible amount. I know that my skills and knowledge as a trader and a quant have increased since graduating from the EPAT programme and my understanding of the market is completely different now.

Any message that you’d like to give to the aspiring Quants out there?

If you’re passionate about the markets and trading, don’t hesitate, jump in and EPAT is a great starting point.

Next Step

Do you aspire to learn Algorithmic Trading? Do you want to start trading on your own? Do you wish to enhance your existing skill set? Then you have the opportunity to learn various aspects of Algorithmic trading with the Executive Programme in Algorithmic Trading (EPAT)!

EPAT equips you with the required skill sets to be a successful trader. It covers training modules like Statistics & Econometrics, Financial Computing & Technology, and Algorithmic & Quantitative Trading. Enroll now to begin your career in Algorithmic Trading.

Disclaimer: In order to assist individuals who are considering pursuing a career in algorithmic and quantitative trading, this case study has been collated based on the personal experiences of a student or alumni from QuantInsti’s EPAT® programme. Case studies are for illustrative purposes only and are not meant to be used for investment purposes. The results achieved post completion of the EPAT® programme may not be uniform for all individuals.

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