Top School in Tampa for Becoming a Pharmacy Technician

Tampa has about 16 schools with pharmacy technician programs. Find the best program for you by reading about schools' rankings, program offerings, and tuition info.

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School and Ranking Information

Students seeking a pharmacy technician program in Tampa can choose from roughly 16 schools within a 50-mile radius of the downtown area. Based on program offerings, graduation rates, and distance from Tampa, the top three schools with pharmacy technician programs are Brewster Technical Center, Pinellas Technical Education Center (pTEC), and Manatee Technical Institute. All schools offer pharmacy technician certificate programs and prepare graduates to sit for the national certification exam.

  • Winner: Brewster is the only school located in Tampa and has the highest graduation rate among the three schools. Its program is also accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP).
  • Runner-Up #1: Pinellas Technical Education Center also offers an ASHP-accredited program and awarded the most certificates in pharmacy technology in 2011-2012.
  • Runner-Up #2: Manatee Technical Institute has the highest graduation rate among the three schools, but it is located over 30 miles from Tampa.

Pharmacy technicians in Florida are required to secure licensure. The requirements to become a registered pharmacy technician include completing a board-approved pharmacy technician training program and passing an exam.

School Comparison Chart

Category Brewster Technical Center Pinellas Technical Education Center Manatee Technical Institute
Location Tampa, FL St. Petersburg, FL (20 miles from downtown Tampa) Bradenton, FL (35 miles from downtown Tampa)
School Type Two-year, public Two-year, public Two-year, public
Total Program Cost (2012-2013) $3,815* $4,440** $4,800**
Pharmacy Technician Program Levels Offered Certificate Certificate Certificate
Pharmacy Technician Certificates Awarded in 2011-2012 15* 27* 19*
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal degree time) for 2009 Entering Class 68%* 59%* 81%*

Sources: *National Center for Education Statistics, **Schools' websites

Winner: Brewster Technical Center

  • ASHP-accredited pharmacy technology program
  • 70% of first-time undergraduates received financial aid, according to 2011-2012 NCES data

Brewster is one of the five Hillsborough County postsecondary extensions for technical and career education. The 1,050-clock-hour pharmacy technician certificate program at this school can be completed in approximately 12 months. The accredited program prepares students with IV clean room training, which is combined with retail and institutional clinical pharmacy work through local business participation. Students complete courses and laboratory work in the classification and systems of medications, pharmacy operations, understanding medical distribution and logistics, and maintaining pharmacy records. Classes also cover preparing prescriptions and medication dosages. Students need to complete a 225-hour practicum in order to graduate. Students may sit for the National Pharmacy Technician Certification Board's (NPTCB) national certification exam on program completion.

Runner-Up #1: Pinellas Technical Education Center

  • ASHP accredits the school's pharmacy programs
  • Most cost of education can be covered by Pell grants
  • NCES showed 70% of first-time undergraduates received financial aid in the 2011-2012 school year

The 12-month pharmacy technician program offers students the allowance to earn state certification. Students achieve this state certification by learning skills in preparations, dose packaging, and admixtures. Courses include terminology, drug classification, and waste disposal. Students further learn a number of subject areas covering electrolytes, chemistry, and drug dosage and side effects.

The program's requirements are completed by students through an outpatient practicum and an inpatient institution. The school expects graduates to take the NTPCB certification exam. Students are further expected to graduate with eligibility for state registration with the Florida Board of Pharmacy.

Runner-Up #2: Manatee Technical Institute

  • The overall student-faculty ratio is 8:1, according to NCES
  • School's job placement rate is 91%
  • MTI training programs are open-entry/open exit or time-based

Through the pharmacy technician program, students get hands-on experience under direction from a licensed pharmacist. Students learn from a curriculum consisting of courses that include training in computer applications, medical terminology, medications, and office management. Further pharmacy-related classes include subjects in pharmacology, prescriptions, and medication preparation. Graduates are eligible for state registration as a registered pharmacy technician. In addition, these graduates can sit for the NPTCB certification exam for pharmacy technicians. Those that pass the exam are certified pharmacy technicians (CPhT).

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