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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Tech Programs
Once you have determined whether you wish to earn a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can start to target your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacist technician colleges to select from in the Bullhead City AZ area and throughout the USA, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and technical schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for colleges that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Bullhead City home. If you are willing to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be important. But there are several other variables that you must consider so that you may properly compare schools. The questions below will help you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate decision.
Is the Pharmacy Tech College Accredited? Most pharmacy technician programs and trade schools have earned a regional or national accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to furnish a complete quality education. Online programs may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with distance or online education. Don't forget to verify that the certificate or degree program in addition to the college you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with helping ensure that you get a superior education, it can assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might mandate that the training program is accredited. And many Bullhead City AZ pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the College Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but numerous pharmacies prefer that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacist tech program should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of work experience. This condition can be satisfied by participating in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA mandates 1 year of experience for certification, which may be met through an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain practical 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 a great way to fulfill the requirement. Ask if the colleges have associations with Bullhead City AZ area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Provide Job Placement Assistance? Securing that first job in Bullhead City AZ after graduation, particularly with no professional experience, can be a daunting undertaking without some help. Ask if the colleges you are considering have job placement programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the college has a good reputation within the profession generating appeal for its graduates. It also means that it has a large network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduates.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Bullhead City AZ residence. Students who have decided to attend online classes 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 even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the typical student to teacher 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 a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist technician school you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Bullhead City AZ area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.