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Questions to Ask Pharmacist Technician Schools
After you have decided whether you would like to earn a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online college or attend classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacist technician programs to choose from in the Catalina Foothills AZ area and throughout the United States, so you should create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and trade schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will probably initially look for schools that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Catalina Foothills home. If you are able to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be critical. But there are many other issues that you must consider so that you may adequately compare colleges. The following questions will help you in collecting that information and help you to make your final selection.
Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Most pharmacy tech programs and vocational schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to furnish a comprehensive quality education. Online schools may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance education. Be sure to check that the certificate or degree program as well as the school you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping make sure that you get a quality education, it might help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may mandate that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Catalina Foothills AZ pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the School Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but many pharmacies prefer that the techs they employ are certified. The pharmacist technician school needs to prep its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of job experience. This requirement may be fulfilled by entering a college sponsored internship program.
Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA mandates a year of job experience for certification, which may be met by means of an internship program. One of the best ways to acquire hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech 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 an excellent way to meet the requirement. Check if the programs have a working relationship with Catalina Foothills Arizona area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Give Job Placement Assistance? Finding that initial job in Catalina Foothills AZ after graduation, particularly with no professional experience, can be a challenging task without some help. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have job placement programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession creating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a substantial network of employer contacts where it can refer graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the school they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Catalina Foothills AZ residence. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the pharmacy technician program you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Catalina Foothills AZ area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.