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What to Ask Pharmacy Technician Colleges
Once you have determined whether you want to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online school or go to classes on campus, you can start to target your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacy tech programs to select from in the Hueytown AL area and throughout the United States, so you need to develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and vocational schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for colleges that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Hueytown residence. 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 effectively compare programs. The following questions will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate selection.
Is the Pharmacy Technician School Accredited? The majority of pharmacist technician programs and vocational schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to offer a comprehensive superior education. Online colleges may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online learning. Don't forget to verify that the degree or certificate program together with the college you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might require that the program of training is accredited. And many Hueytown AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the School Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but numerous pharmacies desire that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacy technician program needs to ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need one year of work experience. This requirement can be fulfilled by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates a year of experience for certification, which may be fulfilled with an internship program. One of the best ways to get hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require practical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to fulfill the requirement. Ask if the colleges have a working relationship with Hueytown Alabama area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Provide Job Placement Help? Finding that first job in Hueytown AL after graduation, particularly with no prior experience, can be a difficult undertaking without some help. Find out if the colleges you are looking at have job placement programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the school has an excellent reputation within the profession creating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduating students.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the college they pick will have to be within commuting distance of their Hueytown AL home. Those who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the pharmacist tech program you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Hueytown AL area, verify 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 have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.