It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Pharmacy Tech Career Below
Questions to Ask Pharmacy Technician Colleges
Once you have decided whether you wish to obtain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online school or go to classes on campus, you can start to target your school options. There are a large number of pharmacy technician colleges to select from in the Enterprise AL area and throughout the United States, so you should develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and trade schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for programs that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Enterprise home. If you are able to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be critical. But there are many other variables that you need to take into consideration so that you may adequately compare schools. The following questions will help you in gathering that information and help you to make your final selection.
Is the Pharmacy Tech College Accredited? Most pharmacist tech programs and vocational schools have obtained a regional or national accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to offer a complete quality education. Online colleges may additionally earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online learning. Don't forget to check that the certificate or degree program in addition to the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it might assist in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may mandate that the training program is accredited. And many Enterprise AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the College Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but many pharmacies prefer that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech college needs to ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of job experience. This condition can be fulfilled by participating in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the College Offer Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA requires one year of experience for certification, which can be met through an internship program. Perhaps the best way to acquire practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to meet the requirement. Check if the colleges have associations with Enterprise Alabama area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Offer Job Placement Help? Finding that initial position in Enterprise AL after graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a daunting task without any support. Find out if the schools you are considering have job assistance programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the college has a good reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a sizable network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the college they choose will have to be within commuting distance of their Enterprise AL home. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are looking at what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist tech school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Enterprise AL area, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.