Pharmacy Technician/Assistant  Interviews


Insider Info

dotWhat to Expect

Pharmacy technology students learn to mix and fill prescriptions as well as maintain patient records and inventories of drug supplies.

A typical class involves taking notes from a lecture, "but also participating in discussions and question-and-answer sessions. There were also problem-solving and demonstration sessions," says Alan Victor Raczka. He graduated from the pharmacy technology program at Holyoke Community College.

You need to keep on top of your courses. "Many hours each week were spent studying for exams and quizzes and in preparing research papers and take-home exams," he says.

You'll also need to complete lab work. "The community pharmacy lab required considerable advanced preparation. [It] involved compounding every dosage form, typing, operating different computer systems and learning to instruct patients about various medical devices," says Raczka.

"The institutional pharmacy lab focused on sterile product preparation techniques and included preparation of IV products and chemotherapy regimens."

Many students stumbled over math in the pharmacy technology program, but Raczka had a different problem. "I found the greatest difficulty to be time management," he says. "There was so much to be done!"

How to Prepare

According to Raczka, high school students should prepare by taking courses in algebra, logic, chemistry, biology and computer technology. They should also refine their writing and research skills.

"In a more general sense, students should learn to make education their top priority and expend much time and effort in their academic pursuits. Students should also cultivate frustration tolerance," says Raczka.

Courses in computers, chemistry, biology and public speaking can also help you prepare for a pharmacy technology program.