Hi - I have a genuine lifelong interest in arch., landscape design, meaningful and functional public spaces, building-street interfaces, accessibility (skeptical of superlatives like 'universal design'), breaking up city grids, issues of densities, mixed-used in zoning and know quite a bit from undergrad about urban geograhy - Jane Jacobs / William Wyte stuff, complete street concepts, pedestrian plans, urban renewal, vernacular arch. and so forth.
Trouble is I don't have any experience and am not in an architecture or planning program. As a mid-career shift I did complete a (very unique) Masters of Fine Arts in Minneapolis, MN which incorporated architectural design approaches to sculptural and small landscape and building interventions. AutoCAD and drafting were part of the program as was an interdisciplinary approach to design thinking.
I don't see myself as a candidate for a Masters in Architecture b/c of my age (late 30s) and am not a sculptor per se.... because I am interested in the big picture and the social aspects of design I was drawn to planning / urban design. These forums though make it sound like planning degrees lead only to municipal jobs dealing with the nuts and bolts of city ordinance and zoning. There is much talk of the small job pool and increased qualifications needed. Are there other opportunities for planning graduates as consultants or more on the design end? My undergrad was Anthropology and Geopgraphy which is a good marriage but it was also 15 years ago. I don't have any knowledge of GIS. Pursue technical GIS training? The program closest to me obviously is the U of MN @ the Humphrey Institute for Public Affairs. I don't know much about other planning programs but do have family and familiarity with the Boston, MA area.
thanks for any input,