Graduation is right around the corner. You are nearing your final years of your BPharm or PharmD schooling that you have done for several years. Your hard work is about to pay off and you can finally move on to the next phase of life! This next phase is not exactly in-line with the life you are living now; as you will soon find out. See below for 5 of the most apparent changes from being a pharmacy student to graduate you will notice.
1. Pharmacy career progression is no longer straightforward
When you are in a university program, you have very specific course requirements. In your first year you are given a list of compulsory courses which you have to take to advance. You are given a couple of elective slots which allow you to choose the courses you wish to take. You ideally don’t want to over-do the requirements of the electives to the detriment of the focus of your core curriculum however. Outside of these electives, you are generally following the same stream as everyone else in your program and only really differing in the timeslots of the lectures. This is a very hands-off approach to figuring out what to do next, since you only have to do what you are told to do.
Once you graduate, this immediately changes. It’s now up to you to decide everything that is relevant for you to be doing. When you decide to enroll in pharmacy you probably thought that with the degree you simply take the degree with you to your local Shopper’s Drugmart or Rexall and become a pharmacist right? Wrong. With a pharmacy degree you can become a pharmacist; however that is only one of several career projections you can take with it. A pharmacy degree alone is in fact not enough to become a pharmacist in Canada, as you still have to complete a national board exam. With a pharmacy degree you can go into quality assurance, go into pharmaceutical business ownership, marketing for a drug or pharmaceutical company, working as a retail pharmacist, research & development, any type of media for pharmaceutical companies, and more. With experience in the field and additional study in the field, more options open up to you. The choice is all yours to make.
2. Mastering the syllabus is no longer enough to carry you to the top
In school the curriculum is king. There is hardly any other way to see it. With a complete understanding of everything in your syllabus you are able to deal with any challenge your classes throw at you flawlessly.
Once you complete university this is no longer the case. Other skills will be required. Your ability to engage diverse audience will come into play along with various other capabilities. With the changing landscape of both the workplace and the business world, your ability to network with professionals will have shifted in importance.
If you become a pharmacist, you need to communicate with both the people who buy medical drugs from you as well as organizations your pharmacy interacts with. Your customers will build relationships with you and in turn you will need to foster relationships with customers and their insurance administrators as well. If you choose to advance through marketing and media, you must know your target market and be able to effectively communicate with them. No matter the field, you must learn to be vigilant and always be thinking ahead.
3. Downtown clusters make things harder instead of easier
The market for those with pharmacy degrees is ok. There are a solid amount of companies that seek individuals with a pharmacy degree to provide competitively offers. The problem lies in that because the pharmaceutical market is so well known to be a great investment, everyone wants to have a pharmaceutical related career and will typically choose to launch their business in high density areas. This makes competition pretty fierce.
4. Real world implications
After school, any professional task involving your pharmaceutical knowledge will have real-world implications on both you and others.
There will be added satisfaction for various reasons. You are helping real people that will show you gratitude on the retail end. Your knowledge will be respected amongst other experts, as physicians, those who work within emergency faculties, and others rely on you. You are making advancements to help the world on the R&D end. You are potentially saving countless people on the QA or QC end.
There is added stress too however. Your school won’t take legal action against you (unless you purposely break their stuff) but people will. A mistake in school loses you marks on an exam you may not remember but a mistake after can hurt someone. No matter the field you enter, you will have to multitask and pay attention to several sources of important information at once. As a result, you will be in highly intense environments often.
5. You will be making the big bucks…instead owing more of it!
Last but not least, a positive aspect that will change right after completing your pharmacy schooling is you will be earning instead of going further into debt!
The average student debt after completing the 6+ years of schooling for a pharmacy student is >$110K/year. The average starting wage of those with the degree is >$110k. So while you do have to take into account the cost of living, you will be making progress and will be in a career that is rewarding and enjoyable. With Bullfrog Insurance you can insure your business a lot quicker than you can get a degree. It only takes 90 seconds. Check in with our blog regularly for more tips and information for your business.
Be sure to visit bullfroginsurance.com or call 1-844-GO-B-FROG.