Pharmacy Technician Schools in Orlando, FL

The population of Orlando, Florida is one that has enjoyed rapid growth over the past decade, with over 100,000 new residents moving to the lively city between 2008 and 2018. This influx has created all kinds of new job opportunities, including for pharmacy technicians, who are needed to help serve the medication needs of a diverse set of people.

While Florida does not mandate that pharmacy technicians be certified to work, only registered, most employers these days do. To help employers the state does now offer a Registered Pharmacy Technician license, which can only be issues to those with formal schooling.

In addition, to sit the PTCB certification exam now calls for candidates to have completed either extensive time working in the field or an approved pharmacy technician certificate program, the latter being the route most candidates take.

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Orlando vs Florida Pharmacy Technicians Employment

When most people think about Orlando they think about the exciting theme parks and other attractions it is home to. But the city is about more than Mickey Mouse and Spiderman. Home to an increasingly diverse population it has also become a major convention destination and is the home of the University of Central Florida, the largest university campus in the United States.

All this means that the number of pharmacies in the city is increasing, as is the demand for skilled and trained staff to man them. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, of the 30,080 people working as pharmacy technicians in the State of Florida in 2018 4,860 of them live in the Orlando area.

Orlando

Florida

4,860
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30,080
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Pharm Techs employed in the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford metro area represents 16% of all PT's employed in the state of Florida (2018, BLS) 

Total Pharmacy Technicians employed in Florida state (2018, BLS)

Salary for Pharmacy Technicians in Orlando

The median hourly wage for a pharmacy technician in 2018 was $15.19, translating to an annual salary of just over $31,000. Across the wage range the lowest starting salaries, usually paid to new retail pharmacy technicians started at $10.78 per hour in the 10th percentile, rising to $19.41 in the 90th percentile.

Pharmacy Technician Annual Wages in Orlando
(BLS Data May 2018)

10th Percentile

$22,420

25th Percentile

$25,960

50th Percentile

$30,660

75th Percentile

$36,410

90th Percentile

$40,370

Pharmacy Technician Schools in Orlando, FL

5

Many of Orlando's pharmacy technicians are graduates of the 5 accredited pharmacy technician schools in the city.

As most employers now prefer, or even require, that their pharmacy technicians be certified as a condition of employment getting the 500 hours of practical experience required by the PTCB - that's the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board - to bypass the education requirement to sit their exam is becoming increasingly difficult. This means that most of those who want to pursue a career as a pharmacy tech choose to take on formal schooling instead.

In 2020 there are five schools that offer pharmacy tech certification programs that meet PTCB guidelines and are approved by them, and it is these schools we are going to take a closer look at here.

1. Florida Career College [Orlando Campus]

989 North Semoran Boulevard, Orlando, FL 32807 | Tel: (321) 430-8300

While Florida Career College maintains several campuses across the region, and offers a diverse range of vocationally focused certificate programs their Pharmacy Technician program, which results in a PTCB approved Certificate, is only offered at its Orlando campus.

In operation for over 35 years the school focuses on providing high quality vocational training for adults of all ages, and the central location of its campus puts it in relatively easy reach for most area residents.

Florida Career College Pharmacy Technician Certificate

Estimated program cost

Cost is, of course, a major factor for many when choosing between schools. The cost of completing the Pharmacy Tech program the school offers will depend on a student's age, employment status, education level and living arrangements, but to estimate your costs you can make use of the school's net price calculator here.

The average cost for a single person under the age of 26 in 2020 is $$15,405, and this does include books and supplies. Your costs however could vary significantly. Financial Aid is available to those who qualify, and according to the school 85% of the students that take this course finance it via Federal and state student loans.

Basic admissions requirements

As the school tries to serve as many people as possible they try to keep the admissions requirements to a minimum. To enroll in the Pharmacy tech Certificate Program students will need to meet the following requirements:

  • Be a US Citizen or Permanent Resident, or non-resident alien with the appropriate visa
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Be over the age of 18
  • Be able to pass a basic skills test set by the school, including math and computer literacy tests.
  • Be able to pass a criminal background test and a drug test.

Time frames and course content

The Pharmacy Technician Certification Program offered at Florida Career College is designed to be completed in 11 months. Students can choose between a day program and an evening program, with the latter taking a few weeks more to complete, but still designed to be completed within a year. Classes begin every 4-6 weeks and enrollment is offered year round.

The curriculum covers all the technical knowledge needed to pass the PTCB exam at the end of the course. Materials are covered in a classroom setting including practical work in the school's pharmaceutical lab. Students are also given the opportunity to complete an externship with a local employer, something that is usually arranged by the school.

By the time they graduate students will have all the knowledge needed to pass their PTCB exam, which must be taken within 60 days. To help them do that program graduates are given online access to additional training materials.

Accreditation

Florida Career College is accredited by the Commission of the Council on Occupational Education. The Pharmacy Tech Certificate is a PTCB approved educational choice and is also approved by the Florida Board of Health.

2. Orange Technical College [Winter Park Campus]

301 W Amelia St, Orlando, FL 32801 | Tel: 407-246-7060

The Winter Park Campus of Orange Technical College offers a comprehensive Pharmacy Technician Certificate program to adults of all ages. Its picturesque campus is close to major highways and public transportation s day and evening classes are offered. It is an excellent choice for working adults looking to change careers or those with families.

Orange Technical College Certificate Program

Estimated program costs

The cost of completing the Orange Technical College Pharmacy Tech certificate program is $5,262.85. This figure includes the cost of books and supplies but not the fees for drug and background testing or the PTCB certification test.

To help meet the costs the school's admission department tries to help students qualify for as much Financial Aid as they can, and this may include a Title IV Federal Pell Grant, Florida Student Assistance Grant, Florida Work Experience Program, Florida Bright Futures Scholarship. Payment arrangements can be made to meet any remaining balances.

Basic admissions requirements

The admissions requirements to enter this program are minimal, but include all the following:

  • Student must meet legal residency requirements.
  • Student should be over 18, or over 17 with parental permission and support
  • Students must take and pass a Basic Adult Educational Skills Test set by the school
  • Students must take and pass a drug test and a criminal background check.

Course content and time frame to completion

The majority of the Pharmacy Technician Certification program is completed in the school's classrooms and labs. Some online coursework is allowed and students are offered the chance to complete an externship with a local employer, although this is not a requirement for graduation.

Usually the course can be completed in less than twelve months and classes are formed throughout the year on a quarterly basis. Credits earned as a part of the course are transferable to Valencia College, also in Orlando, towards an AS Degree should students wish to continue their education.

Accreditation

The Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program offered at Orange Technical College is approved by the ASHP - The American Society of Health System Pharmacists, by the Florida Board of Health and by the PTCB.

3. Concorde Career Institute [Orlando Campus]

3444 McCrory Place Orlando, FL 32803 | Tel: 407-502-6374

The Concorde Career Institute is a private, vocational school that maintains several campuses across the country including one located in the heart of Orlando, where they offer a Pharmacy Technician Diploma designed to fast track adult students to a new career.

Concorde Career Institute Diploma Program

Estimated program costs

The total cost to complete the program varies according to a student's age, legal status and personal situation. They do offer a Cost Estimation tool that students can make use of here.

For a single Florida resident living with their parents who is under 25 the approximate cost is $12,846.00. This includes the cost of books and supplies, as well as testing fees. Financial aid, in the form of Federal loans and grants, as well as a number of Florida state jobseeker's grants are available to those who qualify. While most students fund their education in this way payment plans are also available for those who do not.

Admissions requirements

To be admitted to the Pharmacy Tech Diploma Program students must meet the following requirements:

  • Be over the age of 18 and legally entitled to study at the school
  • Be able to pass a Basic Adult Educational Skills test set by the school
  • Be able to pass a drug test and a criminal background check
  • Complete a BLS Resuscitation certification, which can be arranged by the school.

Time frames and course content

As a 'fast track' program the diploma is designed to be completed in six months on a full time daytime study basis. Most coursework is completed at the school's Orlando campus and covers the basics needed to pass the PTCB certification and receive formal licensing from the State of Florida. When they graduate, and are preparing to take certification exams students are given access to additional online revision materials to assist them, including PTCB exam past papers.

Accreditation

The school is accredited, as a whole,the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC). The Pharmacy Technician Diploma program is approved by both the State of Florida and the PTCB as an acceptable training course.

4. Osceola Technical College [Kissimmee Campus]

501 Simpson Road, Kissimmee, FL 34744 | Tel: 407-344-5080 | Web: https://www.osceolaschools.net/

The Osceola Technical College is a community focused vocational training school primarily aimed at young adults seeking to gain new skills before entering the workforce. It's located in Kissimmee, just outside Orlando, but its campus is easy to reach via major highways or public transportation.

Osceola Technical College Pharmacy Tech Certificate

Estimated program costs

The school currently states that the approximate cost to complete their program is $5,154, inclusive of books, supplies and testing fees. The cost of registration and/or licensing with the State of Florida, and PTCB certification is not however, and will add approximately $200 to that cost. Some financial aid and state grants are available to those who qualify, or students can opt to take advantage of private students loans, like those provided by Sallie Mae.

Admissions requirements

While the school does try to extend the Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program to as many students as possible there are some basic standards and requirements for admission, including all the following:

  • Students must be over the age of 18
  • Students must have a high school diploma or a GED
  • Students must pass a drug test and a criminal background check.
  • Students must prove legal admission to the US.

Time frames and course content

The Pharmacy Technician Program offered at Osceola Technical College is designed to be completed in 11 months. Students can enroll on a full time or part time basis and can choose to complete daytime or early evening classes and new classes form year round.

The material covered by the classroom portion is considered to be more than adequate for a student to take the PTCB certification test successfully and to satisfy requirements if they decide to apply for Florida licensure. Most work is completed on campus but there are practical elements completed with partner companies and local pharmacies.

Accreditation

The program is accredited and approved by both the American Society of Health System Pharmacists and the PTCB and it meets the guidelines for licensure set by the Florida Board of Health.

100 Weldon Boulevard Sanford, FL 32773 | Tel: 407.708.4722

Seminole State College in Sanford, just outside Orlando, is a more traditional college offering certificate and degree programs to a student population that is usually reasonably fresh out of high school. For those aspiring to be a pharmacy technician the school offers a professional certificate and then, for those who wish to continue their education further an Associate’s Degree.

The educational path begins however with the curriculum of the professional certificate. The stated mission of the college is to provide useful, technical education at a cost that is more reasonable than that charged at other colleges in the area.

Seminole State College Pharm. Tech Certificate Program 

Estimated program costs

Tuition is charged on a per credit basis, and the Certificate program is a 40 credit offering. While costs vary according to student age, residency and personal circumstances on average the cost per credit for a single Florida resident student living with parents is around $7,846, but students considering this program should check for themselves what their costs might be.

For those eligible financial aid, both Federal and state is available and the majority of students make use of it to cover the costs of their education.

Admissions requirements

As it is a more traditional college students may find that the academic requirement for admission to the Seminole State Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program is a little more stringent than at private vocational schools. Students must hold a high school diploma or GED to be admitted and prerequisite courses in English and Computer Science must be taken and passed in addition to pharmacy modules. All classes must be passed with a C average or better.

In addition, students must be able to pass a criminal background check and prove their legal residency status. They must also acknowledge they will be required to meet immunization standards and pass a drug test before graduation.

Time frames and course content

The Seminole State Certificate Program is a 40 credit, four term program, and can be completed in 12-18 months. This is a program designed to provide the in depth knowledge needed to begin working as a pharmacy technician in a clinical setting like a hospital as well as the basics to work in a retail setting. After graduation, and upon certification and/or licensure students can opt to continue on, putting their credits earned towards the completion of Associates of Arts degree with a Pharmacy Concentration.

Accreditation

The Seminole State Pharmacy Technician Certificate program is approved by the PTCB, the Florida Board of Health and as a U.S. Department of Education Gainful Employment Program.

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