Hi, many thanks for the advice! Do you think a masters is adequate get in to the field? Or is a PHD a must?
It's a chicken and egg - If you have PHD it's likely to in a specific area, the implications is that you will understand the basics of different areas. The reality is you'll probably use B/MSc level across sectors. Understanding a business domain maths and understanding a quantum computer down to the physics isn't likely to exist in an individual and, to be honest you're more likely to be focused on the use of probability or statistics as part of that. For example monte-carlo and mapping that to a quantum computer.
The company I work for has a large portion of PhDs in the area. From experience the needs of customers branch across them plus - most of the time you don't need to understand the device, other than perhaps characterising it if you're doing production level stuff, the rest is how to take the business problem then map it to a quantum circuit. What are the limits/caveats etc.
The best way to experiment is take a simple maths idea that you're familiar with then try that. There's quite a few examples out there but in the end it comes down to the maths because a java programmer running a example doesn't typically result in a rigorous implementation.
Typically a QC is solving a problem that has a number of input parameters and a single answer. Then adulting the input parameters, rerunning it for cycle for each answer. There's a limit to the number of parameters and the circuit depth (ie the size of program if you will) before things become too noisy and the error rate makes the answers too low a probability. The maturity of QC is akin to the 1960/70s transistors and so is the maturity of algorithms but unlike the 60/70s the speed of increase is faster.
So TL;DR - if you have the maths, try a couple of the examples they give, then pick a problem you know a lot about and then try applying the concepts to it. You'll learn a lot that way.