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What to Ask Pharmacy Technician Schools
Once you have determined whether you want to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can start to target your school options. There are many pharmacist technician schools to select from in the Homewood AL area and throughout the Country, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and trade schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for schools that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Homewood home. If you are able to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be significant. But there are a number of other issues that you must take into consideration in order to properly compare schools. The questions below will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.
Is the Pharmacist Tech School Accredited? Many pharmacy technician colleges and vocational schools have earned 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 evaluated and certified to furnish a complete superior education. Online programs may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online learning. Make sure to check that the certificate or degree program as well as the college you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. Along with helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, it can help in getting financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might require that the program of training is accredited. And many Homewood AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the School Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but numerous pharmacies prefer that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacist technician school needs to prepare its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will additionally need one year of job experience. This requirement can be satisfied by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the College Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA requires 1 year of job experience for certification, which may be fulfilled with an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require practical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Check if the programs have a working relationship with Homewood Alabama area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Give Job Placement Assistance? Securing that initial job in Homewood AL after graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a daunting undertaking without any help. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession generating appeal for its graduates. It also means that it has a sizable network of employer contacts where it can place graduates.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the school they select will need to be within driving distance of their Homewood AL home. Students who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are looking at what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the pharmacy technician college you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Homewood AL area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.