I've beed doing a lot of soul searching these past few weeks. My plan to live in Austin and apply to MLA programs has been unfolding essentially as I had conceived, but the realities of job hunting as well as talks with architecture school graduates has placed some doubts in my mind as to the job security of architecture.
Recently, I have been tossing around the idea of pursuing an online masters degree in Geographic Information Systems from USC or Penn State. Jobs in GIS are plentiful and will be so for the foreseeable future. Also, while in the Air Force I used GIS programs and could add that experience to a GIS job resume. An online degree would allow me to continue working at my current job, plus the knowledge and skills learned would apply to Landscape Architecture and look good on college application portfolios.
I still have many questions that need answering before I make commitments. Today I am taking a trip to A&M to find out more about Landscape Architecture and future options. Hopefully I will return to Austin with a greater perspective and more prepared to make my next move.