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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Tech Colleges
After you have decided whether you want to obtain a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online program or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school options. There are many pharmacist technician programs to select from in the Trussville AL area and throughout the Country, so you need to develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and vocational schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for programs that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Trussville residence. If you are able to move 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 should take into consideration so that you may adequately compare programs. The following questions will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your ultimate selection.
Is the Pharmacy Technician Program Accredited? Most pharmacist technician programs and vocational schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to offer a comprehensive superior education. Online schools may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with online or distance education. Don't forget to verify that the certificate or degree program together with the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you receive a superior education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might mandate that the training program is accredited. And many Trussville AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the College Prep You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but a number of employers desire that the techs they employ are certified. The pharmacist tech program should ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of work experience. This condition may be fulfilled by entering a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Sponsor Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates one year of experience for certification, which may be met with an internship program. One of the best ways to acquire hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require practical training in order to graduate and an internship is a great way to meet the requirement. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Trussville Alabama area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Provide Job Placement Help? Securing that initial job in Trussville AL upon graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a difficult task without some help. Find out if the schools you are considering have job placement programs. If they do, 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 creating appeal for its graduates. It also means that it has a substantial network of employer contacts where it can place graduates.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the college they decide on will need to be within driving distance of their Trussville AL home. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern 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 school that is out of state or perhaps 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 for those students that don't reside within their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the colleges you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist technician school you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Trussville AL area, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.