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What to Ask Pharmacy Tech Programs
Once you have determined whether you wish to obtain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or go to classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school options. There are many pharmacy tech colleges to select from in the Flowing Wells AZ area and throughout the USA, so you need to create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and vocational schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will probably initially look for colleges that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Flowing Wells 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 need to take into consideration so that you may adequately compare colleges. The questions below will help you to gather that information and help you to make your final decision.
Is the Pharmacist Tech School Accredited? Many pharmacist tech colleges and trade schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to offer a complete quality education. Online colleges may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance learning. Be sure to verify that the degree or certificate program in addition to the college you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with helping make sure that you get a quality education, it might assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Flowing Wells AZ pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the College Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but a number of pharmacies desire that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacist tech college should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will additionally need one year of work experience. This condition may be fulfilled by participating in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the School Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA mandates a year of professional experience for certification, which can be fulfilled with an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get practical clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Ask if the schools have associations with Flowing Wells Arizona area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Give Job Placement Assistance? Securing that initial position in Flowing Wells AZ after graduation, particularly with no prior experience, can be a daunting task without some assistance. Find out if the schools you are considering have job placement programs. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the school has a good reputation within the profession creating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of pharmacy contacts where it can place graduates.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the school they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Flowing Wells AZ residence. Those who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something 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 may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that don't reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are looking at what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist technician school you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Flowing Wells AZ area, make sure that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.