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What to Ask Pharmacy Tech Programs
Once you have determined whether you want to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacist technician colleges to choose from in the Scottsboro AL area and throughout the Country, so you need to develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and trade schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for schools that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Scottsboro home. If you are willing to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be important. But there are many other issues that you must take into consideration in order to properly compare schools. The questions below will help you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate decision.
Is the Pharmacy Tech School Accredited? The majority of pharmacy tech programs and vocational schools have obtained a regional or national accreditation. One of the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to furnish a complete superior education. Online schools may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with online or distance education. Be sure to confirm that the certificate or degree program in addition to the college you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. Along with helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it can help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may mandate that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Scottsboro AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the School Prep You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but numerous employers prefer that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacy technician college should ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of work experience. This condition may be satisfied by participating in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA mandates one year of experience for certification, which can be satisfied with an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require practical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to satisfy the requirement. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Scottsboro Alabama area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the College Provide Job Placement Assistance? Getting that initial position in Scottsboro AL upon graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a daunting undertaking without any support. Find out if the schools you are considering have job assistance 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 field generating demand for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a substantial network of employer contacts where it can place graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the college they decide on will have to be within driving distance of their Scottsboro AL home. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of person that prefers to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are looking at what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacy technician school you ultimately pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Scottsboro AL area, make sure that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative 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 emergencies.