RN to Pharmacist

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    I am currently a pharmacy tech, and I am in college taking my pre-reqs. My current major is Biology. My fear is that pharmacy school will be too expensive for me to fund, even through a loan, so I figured that nursing would give me hands on medical experience, AND I'll be able to make decent money through pharmacy school. However, the pathway to get from nurse to pharmacist seems too long. I know I should just stick with my biology major. I am terrified that if I don't get into pharmacy school I will be stuck with a biology degree that I cant' do anything with since I dont like biotech or environmental sciences. I LOVE THE MEDICAL FIELD! I would enjoy nursing to get to pharmacy school, but the premed route seems so much faster. Please help. What path would you take? Keep in mind that I am also trying to raise a child on my own. Time is of the essense. Thanks!
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  4. 0
    If you need to work and you're concerned about not getting into pharmacy school then becoming a working RN (I emphasize the working part since many new grads are struggling to find work) would allow you to support yourself while going to pharmacy school. The problem is, I don't know if pharmacy school is something that really provides enough time to be working at the same time. I'm thinking likely not.

    At the risk of getting flamed, the nursing curriculum is not really a hard science. It is, rather, more of a social science with a smattering of hard science mixed in. To be competitive (and have a much stronger science foundation), you're probably better off with a degree in biology, chemistry, physics, or engineering.
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    I'm a pharmacy tech as well and believe I can offer some advice on this. I switched from pre-med to biology to nursing and think I can offer some perspective on why I made this choices that may be relevant to your situation. I first decided to become a pre-pharmacy major when my local university that I was attending for undergrad opened a new pharmacy school. This was all well and good, until I began working in a local pharmacy. I work in a retail pharmacy so this perspective may be different depending on where you work. I am not ripping on my pharmacists (as they are very knowledgeable) when I say this, but the most technical things the pharmacists do most days is recommend a couple of OTC products. The computer does all checking for duplicate therapies, allergies, contraindicated drug combinations...etc. When in the rare instance anything does pop up that is of significance they usually just tell them to talk to their MD.

    Now this was not at all what I thought it would be. I loved the science behind the way the drugs worked and the complex ways they interacted with each other in the human bodies. This was all lost in a retail setting. Every pharmacist I've ever asked said they forgot 90% of what they learned in school. This lead me to nursing so I can become a NP. I decided I wanted to diagnose and prescribe not fill the medications.

    As for pharmacy students working. We have two students that work in my pharmacy right now. They do make about $4-$5 more an hour than the rest of the techs depending on what year of school they are, but due to commitments to school and studying I'd say they average about 1 to 2 nights of work each per 2 weeks. Pharmacists are in high demand nationally, but like any job this is not true in every area of the country. My area is extremely saturated with pharmacists. For the first time ever the graduates of a local pharmacy school(very prestigious and has been around for quite awhile) all the graduates didn't have jobs when they graduated.

    Not trying to rain on your parade or convince you one way or another just presenting my view to your question....
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    Soory didn't mean to say that they all didn't have jobs. I meant to say that they didn't all have jobs. Big difference its been a long night lol.......
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    Go onto to pharmacy or med school. You're not going to learn what you want to know in an RN program.

    There's a girl in my program that was pre-pharm. She got knocked up and switched over into nursing. Her parents on a pharmacy. She doesn't care anything about nursing. She said it'd be just a job to support herself with.

    If I were in college for the first time all over again I'd stick premed out and kick doors down to get where I wanted. I graduated early sans o-chem and physics II and went on to do other unrelated things. That's what I'd rather be doing quite frankly, but at this point in life I want that LESS than I want to just live life....if that makes sense.
  8. 0
    Quote from D00dNrs2B
    I'm a pharmacy tech as well and believe I can offer some advice on this. I switched from pre-med to biology to nursing and think I can offer some perspective on why I made this choices that may be relevant to your situation. I first decided to become a pre-pharmacy major when my local university that I was attending for undergrad opened a new pharmacy school. This was all well and good, until I began working in a local pharmacy. I work in a retail pharmacy so this perspective may be different depending on where you work. I am not ripping on my pharmacists (as they are very knowledgeable) when I say this, but the most technical things the pharmacists do most days is recommend a couple of OTC products. The computer does all checking for duplicate therapies, allergies, contraindicated drug combinations...etc. When in the rare instance anything does pop up that is of significance they usually just tell them to talk to their MD.

    Now this was not at all what I thought it would be. I loved the science behind the way the drugs worked and the complex ways they interacted with each other in the human bodies. This was all lost in a retail setting. Every pharmacist I've ever asked said they forgot 90% of what they learned in school. This lead me to nursing so I can become a NP. I decided I wanted to diagnose and prescribe not fill the medications.

    As for pharmacy students working. We have two students that work in my pharmacy right now. They do make about $4-$5 more an hour than the rest of the techs depending on what year of school they are, but due to commitments to school and studying I'd say they average about 1 to 2 nights of work each per 2 weeks. Pharmacists are in high demand nationally, but like any job this is not true in every area of the country. My area is extremely saturated with pharmacists. For the first time ever the graduates of a local pharmacy school(very prestigious and has been around for quite awhile) all the graduates didn't have jobs when they graduated.

    Not trying to rain on your parade or convince you one way or another just presenting my view to your question....
    I think being a retail pharmacist would be mind-numbingly boring... but very lucrative, still.

    Being a clinical pharmacist, however, seems to be quite interesting.
  9. 0
    There are lots of avenues to explore in pharmacy not just retail in the cvs or walgreens. There are pharmacists that work clinically in the hospital and dose meds like coumadin, tobramycin, vancomycin etc. They can also do research as well. In some hospitals a dedicated pharmacist responds to codes, and some are assigned to a specific unit to help the Rn's and Dr's. Remember Dr's do not get much in the way of pharmacy schooling in med school and Rn's only get one semester. The pharmacist is a valuable member of the health care team and is even more accessible than the RN or DR is because pharmacists are everywhere and readily available to the general public.
    I have been an RN for six years and have recently decided to go back to school for pharmacy, I am much more interested in drugs and how they work rather than the administration part of it. I also cannot imagine walking the halls of the hospital till I am 65 years old.
  10. 0
    I have been a nurse for 8 years and I am thinking of going into pharmacist school. Wondered how it is going for you and how hard was it to get into a program.


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