How to Choose the Right Pharmacy Tech Program Near Fairbanks Alaska
Now that you have decided to attain your pharmacy tech certificate or degree near FairbanksAK, you might be wondering how to choose the ideal program to receive your education and training. Of course the first step is to locate colleges that offer the certificate or degree that you would like to earn. Many future students begin by searching for colleges that are within driving distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are important factors when deciding on a school, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation must be taken into account also. And if you prefer studying at home in front of your computer rather than in a classroom, then finding an accredited online college will also be included in your vetting process. Let's take a look at the diploma and degree options available, and the benefits of online courses.
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Pharmacy Tech Training Programs
Individuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially 2 options to training to be a tech regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a diploma or a certificate, which normally can be completed in a year or less. These programs offer an overview to the various aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include lab and classroom training. Numerous programs also include an internship at an accepted Fairbanks AK pharmacy or similar facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which generally involves about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does provide a more expansive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program can furnish the necessary amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate decide to become certified.
Pharmacist Technician Available Certifications
It is not required to earn certification in every state, but many graduates of pharmacy tech schools choose to become certified in order to be more competitive when seeking employment. Also, many Fairbanks AK pharmacies will only hire a technician that has earned certification. There are two organizations that provide certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requirements are that the applicant be 18 years or older, be a high school graduate, has completed a training program, and has one or more years of work experience. The PTCB only requires that the candidate has graduated high school and passes their examination. Recertification is required every two years by both programs, which may be fulfilled by completing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacy Technician Online Classes
Before deciding on a pharmacy tech online training program, it's necessary to realize that most programs do require a portion of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is commonly satisfied in a local Fairbanks pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work under an experienced pharmacy technician in order to acquire some real world experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training can be accessed over the internet in your Fairbanks AK home or via any available computer. This alternative is more convenient for most students, notably for those who keep working while acquiring their degree or certificate. And online programs are sometimes more affordable than traditional options. Tuition and costs for commuting and study materials may be reduced significantly. With both the clinical and the online training, a complete education is offered. But not all online schools are accredited, which is critical for securing certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So check that each online college you are looking at is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting agency, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less structured form of education, then online classes might be the right solution for you.
Enroll in the Right Fairbanks Pharmacy Tech Program
Finding the right pharmacy tech training is an important first step to starting your career in a rewarding occupation where helping people with their health is your objective. In the past, most pharmacist technicians were taught "on the job". Nowadays, most pharmacies can no longer afford to do this and place a higher importance on hiring formally educated techs. Training is furnished by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacy technician schools include both laboratory and classroom work. As we have discussed in this article, it's important to select a program that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This applies both for online classes and for those attended on campus. With the proper education and commitment you can achieve your goal of becoming a pharmacy technician in Fairbanks Alaska.