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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Tech Schools
Once you have decided whether you want to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacy tech schools to pick from in the Fortuna Foothills AZ area and throughout the Country, so you should create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and trade schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will probably initially look for programs that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Fortuna Foothills residence. If you are willing to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be important. But there are many other issues that you need to take into consideration in order to properly compare schools. The questions below will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.
Is the Pharmacist Technician School Accredited? The majority of pharmacy technician colleges and vocational schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies 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 programs may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online learning. Be sure to check that the certificate or degree program in addition to the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Along with helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it can help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Fortuna Foothills AZ pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the School Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but numerous pharmacies prefer that the technicians they hire be certified. The pharmacist tech school should prepare its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of professional experience. This requirement can be satisfied by participating in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the College Offer Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA mandates one year of job experience for certification, which may be fulfilled by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train 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 meet the requirement. Ask if the colleges have associations with Fortuna Foothills Arizona area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Finding that first job in Fortuna Foothills AZ upon graduation, especially with no experience, can be a difficult undertaking without some help. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have job assistance programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the school has an excellent reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a large network of pharmacy contacts where it can place graduating students.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the college they decide on will have to be within driving distance of their Fortuna Foothills AZ home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the pharmacist technician college you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Fortuna Foothills AZ area, make certain that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.