Pharmacy Technician Schools in Oklahoma City
Becoming a pharmacy technician offers those interested in working in the medical field a chance to do so without the need for extensive, expensive schooling. Pharmacy techs are now involved in almost every aspect of the day to day running of both clinical and retail pharmacies, and it offers a well-paid, exciting career.
Although there is no requirement for state certification to work as a pharmacy technician in Oklahoma, as there is in many other states, working alone as a pharmacy technician in Oklahoma requires a permit from the Oklahoma Board of Pharmacy.
Only through on-the-job training with a state-licensed pharmacist can you obtain this permit. As a result, the first career goal for any pharmacy tech in Oklahoma is to persuade an employer that they are the candidate worth training, which certification and the completion of a PTCB approved program at one of the pharmacy technician schools in Oklahoma City can greatly assist with.
In addition, according to the Oklahoma Pharmacy, "pharmacy technician applicants must have completed a high school diploma or G.E.D., be of good moral character, and be non-impaired." These requirements are in line both with the requirements to take the PTCB test and admission to most pharmacy technician schools.
Pharmacy Technician Job Outlook and Salaries in Oklahoma City
Because attending one of the pharmacy technician schools in Oklahoma City will probably require a significant financial and time commitment on the part of the student, it is important to take into account the return on that investment in terms of pay and job opportunities.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national average wage for a pharmacy technician in 2021 was $36,740 per year, or $17.66 per hour. The state average for Oklahoma during that time period, according to the BLS, was $30,610 annually, or $14.72 hourly.
As for Oklahoma City itself, the same figures state that the average wage paid to a pharmacy technician working in the area was $36,330 annually or $17.47 hourly.
Salaries vary according to employer and experience, with the lowest 10% of earners averaging $13.43 per hour, or approximately $27,930 or less per year. The top 10% of earners, on the other hand, could expect to command an average of $46,620 or more, working out to an hourly wage of $22.42 or more.
As the pandemic has seen pharmacies, especially retail pharmacies, take a big role in pandemic management and general basic healthcare, and pharmacy employment opportunities increase as a result of this, the current growth projections are likely very out of date. However, in 2019 the BLS predicted that between 2016 and 2026, there will be a 10% increase in the number of pharmacy technician jobs in Oklahoma.
Pharmacy Technician Schools in Oklahoma City, OK
The goal of any pharmacy technician initially is to obtain their permit to work alone from the state. This means finding an employer willing to provide the on the job training the state mandates. While formal certification as a pharmacy technician is not a must in Oklahoma - as it is in a number of other states - it is something that many employers look for, especially in a clinical setting.
The PTCB also now requires that students complete a training program they approve before taking the PTCE test. There are three pharmacy technician schools in Oklahoma City that meet that requirement. However, as they all offer something different in terms of cost, enrollment requirement and format it is worth comparing them all, to help you decide which one best fits your needs.
Oklahoma City Community College
7777 South May Avenue
Oklahoma City, OK 73159-4444
Oklahoma City Community College, like all community colleges, specializes in offering affordable education to the local communities it serves. For adults interested in becoming a pharmacy technician who can meet state permit and PTCB testing requirements they offer a fast track Pharmacy Technician Certificate that can be completed in just two months of evening study.
The campus based course offers a basic overview of the professional as a whole as well as the material covered by the PTCE. As an adult education course it is a cash only offering, meaning that traditional financial aid and private student loans cannot be used to cover its cost.
That cost is reasonable however, and is currently $700. This includes all books and lab fees, although a student must also meet the $129 cost of taking the PTCE, should they choose to do so after graduation.
Metro Technology Centers
1901 Springlake Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK 73111-5201
Ph: (405) 424- 8324
The STEM Center at Metro Technology Centers, a state supported vocational training, offers a wide range of career certificates, including one in Pharmacy Technology, to adults living in the Oklahoma City metro area.
Their PTCB approved course is a campus based offering that meets two evenings evening week for two months and offers classroom and hands-on training. Students are given a broad overview of the profession, the legalities and ethics all pharmacy techs must be aware of as well as prep to sit the PTCE.
To be admitted to the program students must meet all state and PTCB requirements, and also be able to demonstrate math proficiency to a minimum of an eighth grade level. The program is a cash only offering, with the cost currently set at $576 for tuition, and an additional $115 in books and fees. Traditional student aid and private student loans cannot be used to cover the cost, but some students may qualify for a workforce grant.
MedNoc Training College
2828 NW 57th Street, Suite 120
Oklahoma City, OK 73112
MedNoc Training College is a private vocational school offering a range of adult-oriented medical vocational programs, including a Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program. Enrollment is open to anyone who meets state and PTCB requirements and can pass a basic math skills test set by the school.
How long the program takes to complete depends on the format a student chooses to follow. Those who choose full time daytime campus study can complete the program in 5 weeks. Evening study calls for seven weeks of class attendance and those opting for weekend study only usually complete the program in six weeks.
All students are given a broad overview of the duties and responsibilities of working pharmacy technicians as well as extensive preparation to sit the PTCE certification exam. Students must also complete a 50-hour externship with a local employer prior to graduation, something that gives them real world experience future employers may find especially attractive.
The cost of the program is listed on their website and includes books, lab fees and background and drug testing. As it is a cash only offering, traditional financial aid or private student loans are not available to cover the cost, but the school does offer an interest free payment program for those who would prefer to break up the cost.
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Featured image via flickr/sergemelki