Pharmacy Technician/Assistant  Program Description


Insider Info

dotA pharmacy technology program will give you the training to work with pharmacists and the public. It is a great way to enter the pharmaceutical industry.

In the past, you could learn on the job. But more and more states are moving toward certification for pharmacy technicians, so your best choice is to obtain a certificate or a diploma.

St. Clair College of Applied Arts and Technology, for example, looks for "English, Grade 12 mathematics, senior-level biology and chemistry with 60 percent or better at the advanced level or 70 percent or better at the general level," says Yvonne McRobbie, coordinator of St. Clair's pharmacy technician program.

She also recommends that prospective students take typing courses and obtain a current standard first aid certificate.

On the other hand, Holyoke Community College in Massachusetts has an open enrollment policy. "Thus, the only academic requirement is proof of a diploma or [General Education Development] certificate," says David Baker, chair of the pharmacy science and technology department.

In high school, get involved with clubs and programs that build your confidence. And consider doing a high school internship, job shadow or co-op in a pharmacy, adds McRobbie.

In a field where prescriptions are handled on computers, knowing how to use a computer is a huge advantage, says McRobbie.

Holyoke's program prepares students for the workplace by teaching them theory, giving them lab experience and providing clerkship rotations that allow students to try their skills in the real world.

Tuition and books are the main costs. You may also have to pay for a lab coat, course mateirals and name tags.


Occupational Outlook Handbook
For more information related to this field of study, see: Pharmacy Technicians

Journal of Pharmacy Technology
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Pharmacy Choice
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Just the Facts

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