Where Are The Jobs?


You may have heard from time to time that PharmD school graduates, and even seasoned pharmacists, are increasingly having a difficult time finding a pharmacist job, the severity depending on where one lives. With the vast number of PharmD programs available in this country pumping out scores of new pharmacists, as well as more PharmD programs being developed and seeking accreditation, it may be safe to assume that many current and future pharmacists view the supply and demands curves for pharmacists painting a dismal picture. This market saturation is well described in an article, http://www.newrepublic.com/article/119634/pharmacy-school-crisis-why-good-jobs-are-drying. For those interested in a career as a pharmacist, this is something one cannot ignore when assessing the current and future job market for pharmacists in the region(s) where one seeks employment, the potential salaries being offered, the expenses and loan interest rates one has to pay to attend such a program, and many other variables. As with most other things, one has to do a lot of research to compare the return-on-investment (ROI) when selecting a career, and comparing it to other potential careers. Everyone is unique in their personal and financial situations, their life goals, and how much support they may have. PharmD programs are usually rigorous, and in some cases very long. Tuition and loan interest rates can be difficult to pay off, as well as the potential for more expenses accrued throughout life such as raising a family, paying a mortgage, new car, insurance, gas, utility bills, providing basic necessities. For those interested in a career in pharmacy, it may be beneficial to take some time to research whether this is the right career fit, and whether you could afford the costs for financing an education, and if the current/future job market for pharmacists is acceptable. It is a good idea to take the time to do this earlier rather than later, and for any career path you may choose. There are many resources one could use…such as the internet. Obviously, one would have to use their best judgement and ultimately perform the screening on their own as to whether to truly believe the blogs, articles, and websites, and to read at one’s own risk. It is a good idea to parse through and research multiple sources of information. One could perform basic searches on the internet, reading pharmacist career blogs or pharmacy student blogs. Some other good ideas include asking family members, current pharmacists , students, and pharmacy graduates from various different regions, asking career counselors, and also performing job searches from time to time for ‘Pharmacists’ and filter it to the region where one is seeking employment to view how many job postings that are available. The Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/pharmacists.htm, and http://www.pharmacymanpower.com, are other resources one may use for information. In the end, it is up to the person to decide whether a career in pharmacy, all things considered, is right for them. Taking the time to research now will save lots of time and burden if being a pharmacist is not the right fit. To change careers isn’t the easiest for many people, considering mounting debt, and the need to provide for one’s family. Finding the time and energy to return to school at a later age requires lots of focus and fortitude in light of all of the responsibilities one may have at an older age. Another important factor in considering a pharmacist career is to assess whether you truly enjoy the work. Volunteering, interning, or even working in a pharmacy in various settings will provide a good experience for this assessment, and opportunities to network with other pharmacy employees and ask them questions.

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