Pharmacy technicians perform meaningful work while enjoying great job security and a decent salary. Pharmacy technicians typically work regular business hours and can work in many different areas including retail pharmacies, hospitals, and pharmaceutical laboratories.
But how do you pay for pharmacy technician school? The best way is through a pharmacy technician scholarship.
You may qualify for a pharmacy technician scholarship from non-profit organizations, private individuals and businesses, and federal programs.
This guide will go over pharmacy technician scholarship options to help you pay for school and get started in a rewarding career as a pharmacy technician.
Pharmacy Technician Scholarships
Scholarships are one of the best ways to pay for any type of school. Scholarships are given to deserving students and do not have to be repaid, which greatly relieves the financial burden of the student and can make it easier to focus on learning and completing your education.
Each scholarship is different, but potential scholarship recipients usually have to fill out a scholarship application. For larger scholarships, students may have to submit an essay or even attend an interview. Some scholarships are given to people who earn specific awards in high school such as Sterling Scholar.
Many scholarships are only available for students attending a traditional college and pursuing a degree. While there are scholarships available for students of trade schools and online training programs, they can be more difficult to find.
Some options for students trying to pay for pharmacy technician training include:
- Organization: Stepful
- Amount: $550
- Deadline: Rolling deadline
- Requirements: High school diploma and living in any state besides Washington. You can check your eligibility instantly by going through the application process (only takes 2 minutes to complete).
- Description: Qualified applicants can receive up to $550 to put towards their pharmacy technician training through Stepful.
- Organization: Walgreens
- Amount: $250
- Deadline: March 1
- Requirements: Current pharmacy technician student, be eligible to take the pharmacy technician certification exam in the following semester, have financial need for the scholarship.
- Description: Up to 50 scholarships are offered to pharmacy technician students each year that can be put towards certification and examination fees.
- Organization: GoodRx
- Amount: $5,000
- Deadline: July 7
- Requirements: 3.0 GPA or higher on a 4.0 scale, current pharmacy technician or pharmacy student, member of an underrepresented population in pharmacy.
- Description: Scholarship available for pharmacy technicians and pharmacy students who belong to underrepresented groups in healthcare.
- Organization: American Association of Pharmacy Technicians
- Amount: Varies based on certification.
- Deadline: Between March 1 and April 30
- Requirements: Hold a current AAPT membership, be enrolled in a pharmacy technician training program, have completed 12 hours of pharmacy technician training, and hold a C letter grade or better.
- Description: This scholarship was created for individuals enrolled in an accredited Pharmacy Technician education program or who are pursuing continuing education while practicing as a Pharmacy Technician.
- Organization: Utah Society of Health-System Pharmacists
- Amount: Varies based on certification.
- Deadline: March 25
- Requirements: Hold a current USHP membership and pass the pharmacy technician certification exam.
- Description: This is a reimbursement scholarship, and the cost of training and testing to become a certified pharmacy technician will be reimbursed after the student passes their exam. This scholarship can be used for advanced pharmacy technician certifications.
- Organization: Community College of Philadelphia
- Amount: Up to $6,000
- Deadline: Rolling
- Requirements: Complete a pre-scholarship application form, create a student account, and enroll in a pharmacy technician training program.
- Description: Scholarships offered by the Community College of Philidelphia Foundation for students enrolling in workforce development programs such as pharmacy technician, manufacturing, and welding.
Tips for Winning Pharmacy Technician Scholarships
Scholarships can be extremely competitive, especially for larger ones. Give yourself the best chance of winning a pharmacy technician scholarship by following these tips:
- Apply for as many as possible. The more scholarships you apply for, the more likely you are to get one. Find as many scholarship opportunities as you can and apply for them all.
- Be sure to follow the instructions. Review your application carefully before you submit it. Making a mistake or failing to follow the instructions of the application means you will not be considered for the scholarship.
- Look for scholarships specific to you. Many scholarships are offered only to specific groups of people based on their race, religion, gender, major, or location. These tend to be less competitive since there are fewer applicants in each category.
- Have multiple people review your essays and application. Even if you spend a lot of time proofreading your essay and application, you may miss some obvious typing or grammatical mistakes. Have a few people review your work for small mistakes, clarity, and persuasiveness before you submit it.
- Know your audience. While it may be tempting to create one generic essay and submit it to every organization offering a scholarship, it is worth it to spend extra time to tailor your applications and essays to the organizations offering them. Explain why their organization is important to you or how you plan to benefit the organization after you finish your education.
- Go for smaller scholarships. Smaller scholarships tend to be less competitive and may be spread out between more students. Since there is no limit to how many scholarships you can apply towards your education, there is no harm in applying to the smaller scholarships along with the larger amounts.
Financial Aid Options Other Than Pharmacy Technician Scholarships
If you have applied for pharmacy technician scholarships without any luck or need a little more money to pay for your education, there are other financial aid options available. Grants and student loans are great options for you if you need a little extra help paying for your education.
The most common type of grant available for students is the Pell Grant. Pell Grants are offered by the Federal Government and they do not have to be repaid.
Pell Grant money is given out based on need, meaning that lower-income students and families are more likely to receive funding. Students must fill out the FAFSA to see if they are eligible for a Pell Grant.
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant can be awarded in addition to a Pell Grant for students with exceptional financial need. Recipients of these grants generally receive between $100 and $4,000 per year.
Some employers offer tuition reimbursement for employees who commit to staying with the company. If you choose to work for a company that offers tuition reimbursement, make sure that you discuss the terms of payment carefully and understand the time commitment you’ll have to make to avoid having to repay.
Federal Student Loans
In addition to grants, filling out a FAFSA application will allow you to take out a federal student loan.
These loans are almost always a better option than private loans because they have lower interest rates, better repayment terms, the option for an income-driven repayment plan, the possibility of student loan forgiveness, and more borrower protections.
Federal student loans can be used for tuition or to pay for living expenses while you are in school.
Private Student Loans
If you do not qualify for any scholarships or federal student loans, you can look for a private lender or bank that will give you a private student loan. Some banks and private businesses offer student loans, but these often have high interest rates and more strict repayment terms.
If you choose to take out a private student loan, make sure that you create a solid plan to get them paid off as quickly as possible.