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Points to Ask Pharmacy Tech Programs
After you have decided whether you want to attain 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 narrow your school alternatives. There are many pharmacy tech programs to choose from in the New River AZ area and throughout the USA, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and technical schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for programs that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your New River residence. If you are willing to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be critical. But there are a number of other variables that you should take into consideration so that you may effectively compare colleges. The following questions will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your final decision.
Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Many pharmacist tech colleges and vocational schools have obtained a regional or national accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to furnish a comprehensive superior education. Online programs may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance education. Don't forget to check that the degree or certificate program together with the college you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting organization. Along with helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it can help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And a number of New River AZ pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the College Prep You for Certification? Certification is not required in every state, but many employers prefer that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacist technician school should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of professional experience. This qualification can be satisfied by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates one year of professional experience for certification, which can be satisfied by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to obtain 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 prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to meet the requirement. Ask if the schools have associations with New River AZ area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the College Offer Job Placement Assistance? Finding that initial position in New River AZ upon graduation, particularly with no prior experience, can be a difficult endeavor without any assistance. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have job placement programs. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession generating appeal for its graduates. It also means that it has a sizable network of pharmacy contacts where it can place graduates.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the school they select will have to be within commuting distance of their New River AZ residence. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes naturally 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 decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or get lost 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 student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the pharmacy technician school you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the New River AZ area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family obligations.