What types of people would be interested in this program?
The person interested in the Pharmacy Technician program is one starting a career or needing a career change.
Ideally, a person who would like the pharmacy tech program would be one with an interest in health care and possesses a self-motivated pursuit of knowledge in a health care field.
Graduates from high school will also find this a good starting career without a large investment in education, especially those looking for an orientation to the pharmacy field before deciding on further education in obtaining a pharmacy degree.
This type of career will suit a person who:
Is a detail oriented organized problem solver
Has self motivated interest in life long learning
Has compassion and an interest in helping people
Can use superior communication skills in a team work setting
What is the appeal/benefit of this program? (i.e. What do graduates say makes it great?)
The Pharmacy Technician program online theory component allows flexibility of lifestyle and time management. This allows students to stay at home to work in online courses. It saves child care, driving and fuel expenses.
Students come to Selkirk College for 7 weeks for the hands on lab component. Affordable accommodation in off-season rates is available at Kekuli House on the Castlegar Campus for those who travel from out of the area.
Small class sizes give students individual attention as well as a sense of community and sharing with fellow students.
How is this program similar to or different from offerings at other institutions?
The CCAPP accredited program learning requires students to be mature and disciplined. The program is intense and focused on learning skills needed to work in a community and/or hospital pharmacy. The program prepares students for national exams and their provincial regulatory process.
How do I learn practical skills?
Once the online theory courses are complete program students come to the Castlegar Campus to complete seven weeks of training to develop hand on skills in pharmacy computer systems, sterile product preparation and prescription dispensing and compounding.
What are Practicums?
Practicum is 140-160 hours of work experience in each a community and hospital pharmacy. We place students in practicum placements all over the country.
Are there other special benefits/attributes of this program that should be noted?
Instructors make every effort to assist students with acclimatize to the online learning format. The first week of the program is spent in orientation using online tools to practice online learning concepts. Activities include the use of discussions for course communication and presentation as well as practice in retrieval and submission of assignments and exams. As an added benefit to learning online students find, they improve their typing, computer and research skills. Students also develop “team skills” which transfer well into their work place.
Quotes from former students:
Completing the pharmacy technician program online is extremely rewarding. It has taken self-dedication, perseverance and enthusiasm to complete the requirements each week. The program is fast paced, but once you find which learning style works best for you, the course work is manageable. I also want to reassure you that the instructors in this program are friendly, approachable and supportive with any questions or concerns that you might have. Do not hesitate to contact them.
How long has the program been offered at Selkirk?
The Pharmacy Technician Program at Selkirk College began with its first class September 2003. The program obtained Canadian Council for Accreditation of Pharmacy Programs accredited status starting in July of 2010. The program continues to maintain this accredited status.
Which campus(es) deliver this program?
Under the School of Health and Human Services the online component of Pharmacy Technician programs home base is the Castlegar Campus with the Lab component also at Castlegar Campus each year.
Is it offered via distance learning?
The blended program (online and face to face) offers the theory courses in an online learning platform. Details are available on our website at www.selkirk.ca under The School of Health and Human Services.
An online delivery method allows students a convenient educational plan for their busy schedules.
Anonymous quotes from general feedback of the program:
I think being a successful on-line learner teaches more discipline than a traditional setting. Even though all learning teaches discipline, on-line learning requires the learner to keep on his/her toes, and take control of their lives. On-line learning is not impersonal at all. In fact, I believe that it is much more intimate than most University lecture theaters.
I chose the online classroom primarily because of the flexibility I needed when it came to my new family situation. It is nice to know that as the world becomes more competitive, convenient ways to stay competitive are available.
Is a Certificate or Diploma offered upon completion?
How long does the program take to complete?
Although the Pharmacy Technician Program is a full-time 15-month diploma program students may also choose the option to extend the program over 2.5 years.
For optimum success, we highly recommend for those that are working full-time or have other challenges in their life, to take this program over 2.5 years.
What methods of program delivery are used?
The program is delivered primarily in an online learning environment. During the Lab component, practical hands on experience is emphasized.
What careers does this program lead to?
The program prepares students to move forward to become Registered Pharmacy Technicians with provincial pharmacy regulator authorities across Canada.
What further education options are there following this program?
Students will also wish to explore specialty avenues available for training in the homecare field, as well as advanced compounding techniques that may be required by compounding community pharmacies.
Some students will find this an opportunity to explore the pharmacy field before going on to further university education to obtain a pharmacy degree.
What employment opportunities are available, and where, and how plentiful?
Registered Pharmacy Technician opportunities are numerous in many locations across the country. This newly regulated profession is in demand to help support the growing demand on the health care system in Canada.