Hi New Poster here dealing with a life crisis, hope someone can help. A little background about me- I'm turning 25 this year, spent some time in the Marines and now am about to graduate with a Finance Degree. I've wanted to be a trader/investor since Sophomore year of High school, this was 2004. I bought stocks with my money as a teen, some good calls some bad, about broke even. Joined the Military and put everything about investing out of my mind for a while. Fast forward to now, as I'm finishing my degree and looking for a job, everything has seemed to change since High School. I had recently met some Floor Traders/Brokers. They work at the Chicago Board of Trade and they said they would try and get me started there at some entry level position. I decided to get out of the Military and finish up school. Now as I'm finishing up, when I look for a Trader position, they all seem to want engineers or math majors. I hear how trading on the floor is dead and HFT/Algorithmic trading has eliminating scalping and day trading and how all traders are now PHDs or computer programmers. That traders are cutthroat and you can't trust any of them I hear all kinds of things and I don't really know what to think anymore. So here I am, going into my last summer and should be looking for an internship somewhere, but I'm thinking I should dedicate this summer to learn more about trading and day trade for myself. I have saved up about $50,000 from my time in the Military and don't really have large expenses or obligations otherwise. There's no better time to find out how good a trader I will be. My Concerns- 1. Is retail trading even a viable choice anymore? What HAS Algo Trading/ HFT done to the day trader? (I'd love to hear some from some actual day traders who love what they do and make a good living. I have so many questions for the success stories, I'll have to PM you after.) 2. Is Floor Trading really dead? Would it be beneficial for me to continue to network with the Board of Trade guys and get an entry level position there or just try to work at a Prop Shop or just learn myself. 3. With all the Markets to trade out there (commodities, futures, currency, options) which market is best for the little guy? 4.Would working at a Prop Shop be better for me than educating myself (as my ultimate end goal is to trade for myself) and would they teach me a lot about trading for myself or would I become a market maker. Thank so much for reading, if you don't want to answer but know someone or somewhere that I CAN find answers to my questions, please let me know. I will be incredibly grateful for any helpful responses.