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Points to Ask Pharmacy Tech Courses
Once you have determined whether you would like to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online program or go to classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school options. There are a large number of pharmacy tech schools to choose from in the Mesa AZ area and throughout the USA, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and technical schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for schools that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Mesa home. If you are able to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be important. But there are many other factors that you should consider in order to properly compare colleges. The questions below will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your final selection.
Is the Pharmacist Technician Program Accredited? Many pharmacist tech programs and vocational schools have earned a regional or national accreditation. One of the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to offer a complete superior education. Online programs may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with online or distance learning. Don't forget to verify that the certificate or degree program together with the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might mandate that the program of training is accredited. And many Mesa AZ pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the School Prep You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but numerous pharmacies desire that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacist technician college should prepare 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 requirement may be satisfied by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA mandates 1 year of professional experience for certification, which may be met by means of 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 technician degree or certificate programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Check if the programs have a working relationship with Mesa Arizona area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Getting that initial job in Mesa AZ after graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a challenging endeavor without any 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 high job placement rate is an indication that the college has a good reputation within the profession generating demand for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a sizable network of employer contacts where it can place graduating students.
Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the school they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Mesa AZ home. Individuals who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly 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.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the typical student to teacher 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 a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the pharmacist tech school you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Mesa AZ area, verify that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.