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Questions to Ask Pharmacist Technician Colleges
Once you have determined whether you wish to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online program or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school options. There are a large number of pharmacist tech colleges to choose from in the Troy AL area and throughout the USA, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and technical schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for colleges that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Troy residence. If you are able to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be important. But there are several other factors that you must take into consideration in order to adequately compare schools. The following questions will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate selection.
Is the Pharmacist Tech School Accredited? Many pharmacy tech programs and trade schools have earned a regional or national accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to furnish a complete superior education. Online schools may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online education. Be sure to check that the certificate or degree program together with the college you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you get a superior education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may require that the program of training is accredited. And many Troy AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the Program Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but numerous employers desire that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacy technician college should ready 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 requirement can be fulfilled by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA mandates one year of professional experience for certification, which may be met with an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy technician degree or certificate programs also require practical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to satisfy the requirement. Ask if the colleges have a working relationship with Troy Alabama area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Securing that first position in Troy AL after graduation, especially with no prior experience, can be a difficult endeavor without some assistance. Find out if the colleges you are looking at have job assistance programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indication that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession creating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the school they decide on will have to be within commuting distance of their Troy AL residence. Those who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you choose 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 normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are researching what the typical 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 several 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 verify that the pharmacy tech school you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Troy AL area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.