Becoming a Pharmacist in Louisiana – Online PharmD Degrees

Becoming a pharmacist is a lucrative career opportunity that promises a high quality of life and good earnings. In Louisiana, you must obtain your Doctorate of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree to start working as a pharmacist. Your PharmD degree enables you to work in retail, private practice, or as part of a team at a hospital system. In general, your tasks include packaging medications and ensuring the proper medications are taken by the right person and at the correct times. However, not all pharmacist roles are the same. Besides the standard pharmacy setting, you may find yourself partaking in research or working in exciting places.

Given that you dispense medication to the public, your responsibilities are heavy but extremely rewarding. Louisiana brings rich cultural diversity, intriguing coastal waterways, vast entertainment options, great food, and historical knowledge, making it a prime place to enjoy leisure moments and a path to job security by getting a Pharm.D.

Average Salary for a Pharmacist in Louisiana

The demand for pharmacists in Louisiana is extensive, with almost 5,000 pharmacists licensed and practicing in the state. Yet, with a population topping close to 4.5 million, they still cannot meet the quota needed to provide the state’s care.

With vast amounts of land stretching parishes for miles, it can leave any area seriously underserved. The annual mean wage of Louisiana is $122,000, while the national average is $128,570 making Louisiana slightly below the average of wage equality. However, the cost of living is 13.1% lower than the national average, making the offset to bridge the wage gap easier to achieve.

Louisiana Requirements for New Pharmacists

The Louisiana Board of Pharmacy asks that any student applying for pharmacy licensure in Louisiana visit their site and review the Louisiana Pharmacy Law Book found on their website. In addition, they provide a comprehensive packet that outlines all the requirements to apply.

Main Requirements for new Pharmacists

  • Must demonstrate an educational requirement for licensure with proof of professional pharmacy degree awarded accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE)
  • You must successfully pass your North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) and Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination (MPJE)
  • 1,740 hours of pre-licensure professional experience
  • Transcripts from an accredited college conferring your pharmacy degree
  • International students may apply as long as they submit their Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Examination Committee (FPGEC) certificate from the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP)
  • Pass a criminal background check

Requirements for Pharmacists Transferring Out of State

You must visit the Louisiana State Board of Pharmacy forms to submit Certification of Graduation from an ACPE-Accredited college of pharmacy outside Louisiana. It certifies that you’ve completed the required 1,740 hours of professional work experience, including completing all requirements needed for a professional pharmacy degree.

Louisiana In-State Schools With A Pharm.D. Program

Louisiana offers one public option and one private option for your Pharm.D. program. Both have different price points and opportunities, but it boils down to location, tuition, and quality of life.

The University of Louisiana, Monroe College of Pharmacy

The University of Louisiana, Monroe College of Pharmacy (ULM) is located in the city of Monroe. They offer a two or three-year track system once you’ve met your pre-pharmacy requirements, giving flexible options and the fast path to a Pharm.D. Generally, ULM students are focused on their approach and declare pre-pharmacy as their major or choose to pursue a toxicology degree in pre-pharmacy.

Tuition and fees at The University of Louisiana vary for residents and non-residents of Louisiana.

  • $12,076 per year for residents
  • $24,152 per year for non-residents

An added addition to the in-person experience at this campus is the opportunity to participate in the Future Pharmacists Club provided to junior high, high school and college-aged people to help educate and show the opportunity of getting a Doctorate in Pharmacy.

The University of Louisiana offers unique Provisional Entry Programs (PEEP/C-PEP) and Combination Degrees designed for students on a fast track to obtaining their Pharm.D or combining their education by getting their Master’s degree. Follow the link to find out the right curriculum for your Doctorate of Pharmacy.

Xavier University of Louisiana

Xavier University of Louisiana College of Pharmacy is a private university in New Orleans. First-year tuition for all students is $51,957. The program can be completed in 2-3 years. Xavier University of Louisiana College of Pharmacy participates in the Early Assurance Program. 

A private university nestled in the heart of New Orleans is Xavier University of Louisiana College of Pharmacy, offering an opportunity to serve underserved communities. Their website is comprehensive, offering an array of infographics and descriptions that help you figure out your next steps. In addition, their program is competitive, with an acceptance rate of 45% of applicants accepted each year and the number of application numbers reaching 335 people; being on top of your dates, deadlines, and tasks will give you an upper hand.

To be eligible for the Pharm.D. degree, you must:

  • Have participated in college-level work for six years (4 of which are in the College of Pharmacy).
  • A minimum of 57 semester hours of pre-pharmacy coursework.
  • Must have a 2.00-grade point average.
  • Courses must have been taken within the past four years.
  • Letters of recommendation.

In-state tuition at Xavier University of Louisiana’s total cost for their Pharm.D. program is $155,871. They expect to pay around $51,957 each year, with the duration of the program lasting 2-3 years on average.

Xavier University of Louisiana touts a lot of program highlights for the Pharm.D. program like only requiring a $500 deposit to hold your acceptance, a PCAT score will not be necessary, and no bachelor’s degree is needed to get started. With an easy process ahead, Xavier University of Louisiana is an excellent choice for students that must attend a physical pharmacy school.

Online Schools Offering Pharm.D. Programs

New opportunities for schooling are opening up now that we all have had the chance to see what it’s like to work or go to school from home, making it a primary option for many prospective students. So if you’re someone who has a full-time job you drive to, have a family you are responsible for or prefer the experience of learning in your autonomous, curated environment– online may be just for you.

The most crucial aspect of searching for a Pharm.D. program is making sure they are fully accredited now, not awaiting accreditation approval. There is only one option when you assign accreditation as the most critical piece and attend a school with experience.

St. John Fisher College, in partnership with Wegmans School of Pharmacy

Wegmans School of Pharmacy has partnered to create a phenomenal, fully-accredited online option for students through St. John Fisher College located in Rochester, New York. With over 16 years of experience creating an environment that flows seamlessly, they’ve created a program that allows the student to be autonomous and tailor to their unique living styles accordingly– no hybrid classes required.

St. John Fisher College Pharm.D. Program Highlights

  • Varied Class Experience: 2,000 hours of hands-on clinical study and rotations, giving you a head start on your career.
  • First In Pharmacy: Experiential learning accounts for more than 30% of the curriculum.
  • Patient Experience: By year two, you’ll already be participating in hands-on experiences.
  • Employment Rate: Wegmans School of Pharmacy reports that 100% of its students are currently employed.
  • Integrated Technology: Complete lesson recordings are provided for your scheduling needs, and 24/7 technical support.
  • Accreditation-ACPE: St. John Fisher College’s Pharm.D. program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) through June 2024.

St. John Fisher College offers a cost of attendance worksheet provided to each incoming student to help prepare them for the proper route of paying for tuition. Additionally, financial aid is available to those who qualify as the estimated cost for St. John Fisher College is $181,337 and roughly estimated to 1,130 per credit hour.

Requirements To Apply to St. John Fisher College

To be considered for the program pathway, you must complete the following:

  • Official transcripts with two letters of recommendation.
  • Virtual or in-person interview with faculty or staff. Completion of 62 semester hours of prerequisites.
  • Grades no lower than a “C” with a minimum GPA of 2.75.
  • Background check once accepted.
  • International applicants must submit TOEFL scores and send transcripts to World Education Services (WES) for course evaluation.

With all the great benefits St. John Fisher College offers for an online Pharm.D. program, don’t pass up the opportunity to see if online learning is the way you should go. If you’re ready to apply, jump on your application to St. John Fisher College’s Pharm.D. program to quickly plan your future.

Planning your New Pharmacy Career

Getting your Pharm.D. in Louisiana gives you options that matter, access to diverse atmospheres and quality education backed by years of experience. It may be hard to choose what school to attend, or you may want to base your choice around the price. Still, the underlying decision is whether you want freedom and flexibility with your schedule or require an on-campus experience that can limit your access to life’s regular responsibilities. That’s why it’s essential to understand where your path may lead in the foreseeable future before choosing where you want to study.