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Discussion in 'Pre-Pharmacy' started by atomi, May 13, 2008.
Yes, you could wait till Sept or Oct. to apply, however, applying to pharm school because you didn't get into med school is not a very good reason...unless you've thoroughly researched both professions and you'd be happy doing either.
You'd likely need to take a few classes as you said, but it depends on what school you want to go to. If you want to apply to a bunch of schools, you will need to take both micro and macroeconomics.
As to your MCAT/PCAT question, I don't know...I think there is only a handful of people who have taken both on this forum.
I have taken both the MCAT and the PCAT (and the GRE, too!). I took the MCAT last June 15 and was hoping to have my scores back before the registration deadline for the August PCAT (if I did really well on the MCAT I didn't want to pay for the PCAT). I didn't get my scores back in time so I registered for the PCAT on the last day possible and there ended up not being any seats left in my hometown so I had to travel pretty far away to take the PCAT.
The content of the two tests are quite similar, but the format is very different. There is a math section on the PCAT but not the MCAT. I don't think there is a physics section on the PCAT. Your MCAT study materials should prepare you for everything but the math section, and your background should cover that as it doesn't go beyond the basics of Calc I. While the MCAT has those huge passages with crazy questions, the PCAT is more question and answer style with each question being a stand-alone item. I would suggest going to your library and getting a PCAT book to get familiar with the format.
In the end I totally bombed the MCAT but did fairly well with the PCAT. I too figured I would be happy with both careers. I was leaning towards pharmacy and the test results sealed the deal. I am so happy with my decision and have no regrets.
There is a June PCAT and if it's not too late to register, it wouldn't be the most difficult thing to take both of them a week apart. I took the August PCAT and then had to wait 6 weeks for my scores so I couldn't apply until October. By that point, many people on this forum were interviewing. (It is possible to apply before getting your scores back, but I personally didn't want to until I found out how I did.)
I know this is a bit long-winded, but feel free to let me know if it doesn't cover it all! Good luck!
Well since you haven't decided on a school yet, as a general guideline 80+%ile would give you at least a shot at any school - the higher the better of course.
why not, you should try.
Apply if you want... you certainly have the grades to get in, but other than money, why do you want to do pharmacy? You haven't even worked or volunteered in a pharmacy. You should at least step foot into a pharmacy to see if you'll like doing what a pharmacist does. Btw, you can take the PCAT in June.
Every school has different pre-reqs (which is such a pain) therefore it depends a lot on which schools you are planning to apply to.
You will probably need the following, Microbiology, Statistics (if you dont have it), Anatomy & Physiology I (possibly II depending on the school), Speech, Economics (micro or macro or both depending). Some schools require Psychology, some have general Sociology requirements. Many schools are now requiring Biochemistry. Some schools even require Cell and Molec Bio and Immunology.
A lot of schools will not take pre-reqs over 5,7, or 10 years old depending on the school. Therefore, you will need to take that into consideration.
You will need to spend some time researching the individual school requirement. Also, call the school to ask about age limits on courses, as often that requirement is buried in FAQs.
I found that a spreadsheet of required classes helped me narrow down which pre-reqs were most beneficial. Yes, you can take these pre-reqs during the Fall and Spring Semesters of the 2008-2009 year. However, if you are missing too many pre-reqs that may hurt your chances.
The MCAT is harder than the PCAT, but as someone mentioned earlier, the only real difference is the math section (which also includes some basic statistics). Also, time is a bigger issue (at least it was for me) in the PCAT- except the reading comp which is cake compared to the MCAT.
Best of luck- its time to start doing some research!
I think you are pretty much stuck taking PCAT. I've never heard of any pharm schools accepting MCAT. Just like I've never heard of any med schools accepting PCAT.
It's still corporate. Unless you can start up your own company, you'll be working for someone else. I would imagine start-up costs are inhibitory. A reasonably busy pharmacy can have $1,000,000 tied up in inventory.
Yes... just like my job.... my job is so office space (ironically in the pharmacautical industry) I have 13 days left here... I'm considering installing Tetris on my computer, bringing in several bags of cheetos and a drill to bring down my cube walls!!
You should look into getting a job in a pharmacy part time. You can still do this with a "real" job... I know because I do it. I work about 15 hours/wk at a Walgreens on nights or weekends in addition to my 50 hours in corporate hell. It is hard, but worth the effort to know what you are getting in to and to have direct pharmacy experience.
BTW, some pharmacy schools require you to have a certain number of hours of pharmacy experience before applying to pharmacy school (University of Arizona is an example (6 mo experience) ... pharmacetuical industry doesn't count- go figure!). One more thing to consider when applying.
Yes, CVS pays horribly and they may consider you overqualified since they hire newbies as pharmacy clerks (cashier) - assuming you are not a CPhT.
I put in an application to Walgreens while I was in the interview process after getting slammed at one interview for not having direct pharmacy experience. A pharmacy manager called a couple of weeks later (after I received my acceptance). I was very honest about why I wanted to work there- to gain experience- the PM was very understanding and happy to have a student on board. They are really flexible with my schedule, I work 5pm-10pm shifts (late but I got used to it) and some Sat and Sun (but never both). I will also continue to work there while in Pharmacy school as an intern- so that works out well for me.
I started at just over 10 dollars an hour, which is chump change compared to my "real" job, but the experience is priceless. Also, I will make more as an intern, compared to a student who is hired directly as an intern (I'm not sure why that is). At least I wont be clueless when I start school.
It's all about timing, though. Sometimes they are looking for people desperately, other times they don't need anyone..
Best of luck!
Yes, you can apply without all of the pre-reqs done. The more you have the better, though.
The questions you are asking here can easily be answered with a little bit of searching. We are here to help and share, but not to do all of the work for you
Select a few pharmacy schools and look over their websites (I would recommend USC's website). This will give you some general information on what it takes to get in and succeed in the field.
I would do yourself a favor and really study the posts from this board - even as far back as last summer because you will find people who used to be in your similar position asking similar questions.
Also visit http://www.aacp.org The website takes a lot of digging to find what you want, but it is filled with info. It has lists of PharmCAS-participating schools and those who don't. It details prereqs, tuition, acceptance rates, etc for many schools, and nearly anything else you can imagine.