youth movement, revisited
Take a look at the gentleman in the photo at left. He is already certified as a freight train engineer. His experience as a freight conductor goes back to 2004 when he hired on with the railroad at the age of 19. He also worked as a train dispatcher for a year. He has just recently been hired by Amtrak; in a few months, pending successful completion of a passenger engineer training program in Wilmington, Delaware, he'll be qualified to operate trains carrying hundreds of passengers at speeds up to 90 mph.
Congratulations, Matt... it sounds like this is what you've always wanted and I hope you'll stick with it. Study hard, and remember to "drive it like you stole it"...
np: Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash - "Interstate Cannonball"