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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Tech Colleges
After you have decided whether you would like to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacist technician colleges to choose from in the Moody AL area and throughout the Country, so you should develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and vocational schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will most likely initially look for schools that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Moody home. If you are willing to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be critical. But there are a number of other variables that you must take into consideration so that you may effectively compare programs. The questions below will help you in collecting that information and help you to make your final selection.
Is the Pharmacy Technician School Accredited? Most pharmacist technician programs and vocational schools have earned a regional or national accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to furnish a complete superior education. Online programs may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance education. Make sure to confirm that the certificate or degree program together with the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. Along with helping ensure that you get a superior education, it can help in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Moody AL 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 required in all states, but many pharmacies desire that the techs they employ be certified. The pharmacist technician 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 work experience. This condition may be fulfilled by participating in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the College Offer Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA mandates one year of job experience for certification, which can be fulfilled through 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 tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to satisfy the requirement. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Moody AL area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Provide Job Placement Help? Securing that initial position in Moody AL upon graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a daunting undertaking without any support. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the school has a good reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of employer contacts where it can refer graduates.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the school they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Moody AL home. Those who have decided to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or even 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 commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the pharmacy tech program you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Moody AL area, make certain that they are available. 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 have to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.