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What to Ask Pharmacy Technician Programs
After you have determined whether you wish to attain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online school or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacy technician schools to pick from in the El Mirage AZ area and throughout the Country, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and technical schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for schools that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your El Mirage home. If you are able to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be significant. But there are many other variables that you need to consider in order to adequately compare schools. The questions below will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your final choice.
Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Most pharmacist technician colleges and trade schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to offer a comprehensive superior education. Online programs may additionally earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online education. Make 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 recognized accrediting organization. Along with helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might require that the program of training is accredited. And a number of El Mirage AZ employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the School Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but many pharmacies desire that the techs they hire are certified. The pharmacist technician school should prep its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of professional experience. This qualification can be fulfilled by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA requires a year of professional experience for certification, which may be met through an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to satisfy the requirement. Ask if the programs have a working relationship with El Mirage Arizona area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Getting that first job in El Mirage AZ upon graduation, particularly with no prior experience, can be a daunting task without any help. Find out if the schools you are researching have job assistance programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the college has a good reputation within the profession creating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduates.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their El Mirage AZ home. Individuals who have decided to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to keep 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 have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are reviewing what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the pharmacist technician program you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the El Mirage AZ area, make certain that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.