stoichiometrist

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Aug 2, 2011
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High salary - computer science, engineering, accounting, finance, the trades, etc. are much better options.

Low debt - see above

Less schooling - see above

Don't want to touch patients - see above

Better job security - see above

Bankers' hours, flexible hours, or even work from home - see above

Don't have to relocate to a town with a population of <10,000 - see above

Want to help people - medicine, teaching, etc.

Enjoy patient care - medicine

Actually be able to prescribe medications - medicine

Enjoy chemistry - PhD in chemistry since you won't use much chemistry in pharmacy practice.

Want to do research - PhD since the vast majority of PharmDs end up in retail. Probably fewer than 0.5% of pharmacists end up in research.

Want to go into industry - see above; get a PhD since a $200k PharmD isn't really necessary to go into industry. The vast majority of PharmDs end up in retail.
 

mentos

10+ Year Member
Nov 22, 2009
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"I want to be a Doctor" - then become a real doctor


Other low risk high rewards careers:
Taco Bell manager
In-N-Out manager
Trucker
Pilot
CPA/CFA
Police officer
General contractor
Dental hygienist
X-ray technician

Pharmacy is either:
high risk low reward (low paying job in BFE)
high risk no reward (no job)
 
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Timbo

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Dec 31, 2010
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I had a little chat with the cashier at a Carl's Jr a few months ago. His manager makes $52/hr. That's like $10/hr more than what retail pharmacists are offered these days lol
 
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rxkrafted

5+ Year Member
Apr 9, 2014
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Only thing that sucks is that you have to work up the food service industry first. Start as a cashier or something and then hope for promotions along the way until a manager position opens up. I don't know how often this happens though.
 

VictorOfHungerGames

May the odds be ever in your favor
May 8, 2018
744
601
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Pharmacist
"I want to be a Doctor" - then become a real doctor


Other low risk high rewards careers:
Taco Bell manager
In-N-Out manager
Trucker
Pilot
CPA/CFA
Police officer
General contractor
Dental hygienist
X-ray technician

Pharmacy is either:
high risk low reward (low paying job in BFE)
high risk no reward (no job)
I'm looking into becoming a pilot. Probably has the best outcome of all the jobs you listed.
 
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VictorOfHungerGames

May the odds be ever in your favor
May 8, 2018
744
601
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I had a little chat with the cashier at a Carl's Jr a few months ago. His manager makes $52/hr. That's like $10/hr more than what retail pharmacists are offered these days lol
This aint it chief. There is zero evidence to prove this. Fast food restaurant manager tops off at $40k according to Glassdoor.
 
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stoichiometrist

7+ Year Member
Aug 2, 2011
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Only thing that sucks is that you have to work up the food service industry first. Start as a cashier or something and then hope for promotions along the way until a manager position opens up. I don't know how often this happens though.
In hindsight I would still take that over the odds of you going through $200k+ in loans and 4+ years of your life only to hope that you land a full time $50/hr job in retail pharmacy hell, let alone one of the hospital or industry jobs that just about every pharmacist would kill for.
 
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mentos

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ya know at this point I think if people still want to come join us they get what they deserve, and we should just chill and wait for the "I'VEMADE A HUGE MISTAKE" threads
Yeah, really hard to feel sorry for them with all the warnings they've been given. They just need to back off and let the profession die in peace....
 

Rx1992

5+ Year Member
Jul 31, 2013
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Only thing that sucks is that you have to work up the food service industry first. Start as a cashier or something and then hope for promotions along the way until a manager position opens up. I don't know how often this happens though.
That’s with every field other than medicine, unless you count residency as a starting position. Even in pharmacy, one goes from Floater to Staff to Pharmacy Manager.
 

rxkrafted

5+ Year Member
Apr 9, 2014
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That’s with every field other than medicine, unless you count residency as a starting position. Even in pharmacy, one goes from Floater to Staff to Pharmacy Manager.
Yeah but it those examples, pay and work doesn't change dramatically.
I know retail pharmacy is stressful but I don't think its equivalent to working in the back of a fastfood restaurant as a cook, working the registers with bad customers, and cleaning tables for minimum wage with the hopes of getting promoted some day.
 

Rx1992

5+ Year Member
Jul 31, 2013
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Pharmacist
Yeah but it those examples, pay and work doesn't change dramatically.
I know retail pharmacy is stressful but I don't think its equivalent to working in the back of a fastfood restaurant as a cook, working the registers with bad customers, and cleaning tables for minimum wage with the hopes of getting promoted some day.
The nature of the work is not the same, but most jobs have a moving up the corporate ladder scheme
 
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RxEvileye

5+ Year Member
Jun 13, 2013
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Just countering with some positivity:

High salary - So far pretty good, of course many bachelor's-level degrees make the same, but pharmacy is what I wanted to do. The sacrifice in income during residency was worth it and quickly becoming a requirement anyway for non-retail jobs.

Low debt - Student loans will be paid down pretty quickly if I choose to do so, but this is a larger systemic/political issue and most people do not have 200-300k like everyone in the forum jumps to, especially if attending a public institution. Here is one reference: What Is the Average Pharmacist Student Loan Debt? - NerdWallet

Less schooling - Seems like a personal choice. Of course it is less schooling to be an engineer or accountant, but I did not want to do that. If you are suggesting medicine or other health professions, most take even more time unless doing up to a PGY-1 and -2.

Don't want to touch patients - Always thought this was a poor reason to narrow down to pharmacy to begin with. We directly work with patients in many roles, taking vitals, some take physical exams, point-of-care tests, seeing blood/infections/etc. in hospital settings and rotations. Perhaps if we had more people in the profession willing to participate in direct patient care, there would be more of us able to participate in direct patient care.

Better job security - Agree with some criticism, BLS and other sources that pharmacy has stagnated due to many reasons. Pre-Pharms should consider whether it is worth pursuing still. For me it was.

Bankers' hours, flexible hours, or even work from home - Agree this is an issue for many pharmacists. We should stand up for ourselves and advocate for legal and workplace changes. Most in ambulatory care, managed care etc. do enjoy regular hours though.

Don't have to relocate to a town with a population of <10,000 - Same as job security section, but of course being unwilling/unable to move does not help.

Want to help people - Agree that people should reflect on why pharmacy in particular as a way of helping people before pursuing the career. For me, it was a better fit than medicine etc. and I enjoy what I do. I think we help people more than physicians sometimes in many settings, actually ensuring optimal treatment, adherence, educating patients etc. and often spending more time with them than just a diagnosis and leaving.

Enjoy patient care - Yes, just depends what kind.

Actually be able to prescribe medications - Many of us do, and we should be advocating for what we are able to do rather than throwing up our hands and saying this is how the profession will always be.

Enjoy chemistry - Never enjoyed it, always thought people should consider other careers if their passion is just chemistry. We are doctorates in a health profession, not pharmaceutical chemists.

Want to do research - Can still do clinical/other research, but Pre-Pharms should understand it is very rarely bench research.

Want to go into industry - Seems like there are specific roles suitable for PharmDs in industry. If the PharmD is their chosen path, they should know how their interests and training align with the job. You are right if their goal is just to go into industry in general they can do so by other routes. But they would of course have to want to be a PhD researcher etc. like you said.
 
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stoichiometrist

7+ Year Member
Aug 2, 2011
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2,413
"I want to be a Doctor" - then become a real doctor


Other low risk high rewards careers:
Taco Bell manager
In-N-Out manager
Trucker
Pilot
CPA/CFA
Police officer
General contractor
Dental hygienist
X-ray technician

Pharmacy is either:
high risk low reward (low paying job in BFE)
high risk no reward (no job)
You can earn more than a pharmacist can in the professions listed above. If you spend $200k+ and another 4 years on pharmacy school only to earn less than one of the above professions then you would end up with a negative reward.
 
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mentos

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Nov 22, 2009
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Yeah but it those examples, pay and work doesn't change dramatically.
I know retail pharmacy is stressful but I don't think its equivalent to working in the back of a fastfood restaurant as a cook, working the registers with bad customers, and cleaning tables for minimum wage with the hopes of getting promoted some day.
I had a high school classmate who became a manager at Burger King like a year out of high school. Not sure how different things are today though.
 
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Why dont people become plumbers and electricians.... If you seriously know how much they make, you wont go into anything else, requires very minimal training. Bet If they call it a phd, i bet a bunch of people will start going into that profession.

Doctor of Maintenance... Specialized in Plumbing.
Doctor of Maintenance... Specialized in Electrical work.
 
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stoichiometrist

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Aug 2, 2011
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Why dont people become plumbers and electricians.... If you seriously know how much they make, you wont go into anything else, requires very minimal training. Bet If they call it a phd, i bet a bunch of people will start going into that profession.

Doctor of Maintenance... Specialized in Plumbing.
Doctor of Maintenance... Specialized in Electrical work.
Don't forget pharmacy residencies in HVAC pharmacy:

 
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Apr 18, 2018
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I think a lot of people look down on those who haven't gone to college. In reality, they should look down on the people that go to school and get worthless degrees (like pharmacy) and can't make a living with the degree they've "bought" (I hesitate to say "earned" anymore since anyone who spends the money can pretty much leave with a degree these days.) Being a plumber would have involved much less training than pharmacy with a much better outcome (and MUCH less stress) over the long haul.

I'm sure the snowflakes can't see it, but there is wisdom in this concept....
 

mentos

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Why dont people become plumbers and electricians.... If you seriously know how much they make, you wont go into anything else, requires very minimal training. Bet If they call it a phd, i bet a bunch of people will start going into that profession.

Doctor of Maintenance... Specialized in Plumbing.
Doctor of Maintenance... Specialized in Electrical work.
That's what I keep saying. My plumber charged $10,600 for a new boiler. I paid for the parts directly which was $7000 and the rest went into his pocket. Took him a couple days to install. His phone kept ringing off the hook for other jobs he had lined up. He even refused work 'cause he was so busy.

My electrician friend is the same way. Dropped out of undergrad to become an electrician, and years later he's doing better than all of us who got degrees. He had a paid off BMW at age 22, bought a multifamily that he gutted and rented out the other half which pays for most of the mortgage.

I also have a mechanic friend who owns an auto shop. When he was in his 30s he paid off his 1.5 million dollar home and owned several rental properties.

They all get paid in cash.
 

mentos

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Nov 22, 2009
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I think a lot of people look down on those who haven't gone to college. In reality, they should look down on the people that go to school and get worthless degrees (like pharmacy) and can't make a living with the degree they've "bought" (I hesitate to say "earned" anymore since anyone who spends the money can pretty much leave with a degree these days.) Being a plumber would have involved much less training than pharmacy with a much better outcome (and MUCH less stress) over the long haul.

I'm sure the snowflakes can't see it, but there is wisdom in this concept....
This is true, can't call a plumber or carpenter a Doctor. Yet these people who look down on them will take out a mortgage for a useless degree. Then they'll have to pay the plumber $300 cash for an easy job that they can't do with their degree.
 
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stoichiometrist

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We were always told that we must go to college or we’ll be flipping burgers for the rest of our lives.

The real joke is on those who took out $50k+ in loans to go to college for a useless degree and are still stuck flipping burgers or something similar.
 

VictorOfHungerGames

May the odds be ever in your favor
May 8, 2018
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That's what I keep saying. My plumber charged $10,600 for a new boiler. I paid for the parts directly which was $7000 and the rest went into his pocket. Took him a couple days to install. His phone kept ringing off the hook for other jobs he had lined up. He even refused work 'cause he was so busy.

My electrician friend is the same way. Dropped out of undergrad to become an electrician, and years later he's doing better than all of us who got degrees. He had a paid off BMW at age 22, bought a multifamily that he gutted and rented out the other half which pays for most of the mortgage.

I also have a mechanic friend who owns an auto shop. When he was in his 30s he paid off his 1.5 million dollar home and owned several rental properties.

They all get paid in cash.
oh sure, my parents own multiple beauty supplies and make about $500k a year... i could've taken that over. Still can but do I want to? probably not. To each his own i suppose but if money was what drove me, i wouldn't have chosen to be a pharmacist.

But i get your point of how pharmacy sucks right now and a plumber may have a better life comparably. Can't argue with that yet I still think we, as a profession and in general, have a better life.
 
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stoichiometrist

7+ Year Member
Aug 2, 2011
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ya know at this point I think if people still want to come join us they get what they deserve, and we should just chill and wait for the "I'VEMADE A HUGE MISTAKE" threads
It's still bad for us pharmacists with jobs because if loan forgiveness passes we'll end up being the ones paying for them.

I would say that they're one of the biggest part of the problem of saturation, worsening work conditions, and lowered pay. Most of them think they'll be the lucky ones to land their unicorn jobs, but in reality they will be $200k+ in debt and have nothing to lose by begging for lower pay, allowing the chains to abuse them, and cutting corners on patient safety.
 
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VictorOfHungerGames

May the odds be ever in your favor
May 8, 2018
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It's still bad for us pharmacists with jobs because if loan forgiveness passes we'll end up being the ones paying for them.

I would say that they're one of the biggest part of the problem of saturation, worsening work conditions, and lowered pay. Most of them think they'll be the lucky ones to land their unicorn jobs, but in reality they will be $200k+ in debt and have nothing to lose by begging for lower pay, allowing the chains to abuse them, and cutting corners on patient safety.
This is why Andrew Yang should be president. $1000 a month will give everyone one of us to not worry about damn loans lol
 

APN-59 rph

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Dec 19, 2016
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I paid my loans off in 2 years and now I don't have to worry about them.
How much was a semester of pharmacy college in those days?

When you compare the trades to pharmacy you have to realize that so much of pharmacy school is "nice to know"...most of trade school is "need to know". A grain hauler can close a whole port with say..dumping seed corn in feed corn...setting windows in a house with the wrong layout? Laying brick when too cold? oop's...
Pilots kill themselves too...
 

mentos

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How much was a semester of pharmacy college in those days?

When you compare the trades to pharmacy you have to realize that so much of pharmacy school is "nice to know"...most of trade school is "need to know". A grain hauler can close a whole port with say..dumping seed corn in feed corn...setting windows in a house with the wrong layout? Laying brick when too cold? oop's...
Pilots kill themselves too...
My total tuition for pharmacy school was about $150,000. "Those days" was only 6 years ago.
 
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