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Points to Ask Pharmacy Tech Colleges
After you have determined whether you wish to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online school or attend classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school options. There are numerous pharmacy technician programs to pick from in the Calera AL area and throughout the United States, so you need to create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and technical schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for schools that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Calera home. If you are able to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be critical. But there are several other factors that you need to consider so that you may effectively compare programs. The following questions will help you to gather that information and help you to make your final choice.
Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Most pharmacist technician colleges and trade schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to furnish a comprehensive superior education. Online colleges may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online education. Don't forget to verify that the degree or certificate program together with the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping guarantee that you receive a superior education, it can assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And a number of Calera AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the College Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but a number of pharmacies desire that the techs they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech school should prepare its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of job experience. This condition may be fulfilled by participating in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the College Provide Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA requires one year of professional experience for certification, which can be met through an internship program. Perhaps the best way to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require practical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to meet the requirement. Find out if the colleges have associations with Calera Alabama area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Securing that initial job in Calera AL upon graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a daunting undertaking without some help. Ask if the schools you are considering have job placement programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the college has a good reputation within the field generating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a substantial network of employer contacts where it can place graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the school they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Calera AL home. Students who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist technician college you finally choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Calera AL area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.