Start Your Pharmacy Technician Career in Utah
Now is a great time to begin your career as a pharmacy technician. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), demand for pharmacy technicians is growing faster than average. If you have customer service skills, math and science skills, and a good eye for detail, this could be the career for you. [Leer en español]
Pharmacy technicians perform a wide range of functions to aid licensed pharmacists in pharmacy settings. Their main responsibilities include preparing medications and serving customers. These professionals are trained to dispense, measure and package prescriptions, which must be reviewed by a pharmacist. They also answer phone calls and ask pharmacists to help customers with questions and concerns.
The BLS reports that 52 percent of pharmacy technicians work in traditional pharmacy and drugstore settings. Sixteen percent work in hospital settings, and 18 percent work in general merchandise store settings.
Your Route to Becoming a Pharmacy Technician
Your first step to becoming a pharmacy tech is to earn a high school diploma or GED equivalent. You also need to be at least 18 years old before you can begin your career. Next, you’ll need to train to learn everything you need to pass a national exam. Some pharmacy technicians train on the job with an employer, but many enroll in a college training program.
After completing your training, you’ll need to successfully complete a national pharmacy technician exam. This is a requirement when you apply for your Utah license, which is the final step to becoming a pharmacy technician in the state.
More on School Options
Many pharmacy technician programs last less than a year and result in a certificate. To ensure that you’ll receive quality education, it’s recommended that you enroll in a school accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) or the Accreditation Counsel for Pharmacy Education (ACPE). Many schools also offer the option to complete your associate’s degree. This can be a great foundation for further education.
Here are a couple schools with pharmacy technician programs in Utah:
- Salt Lake Community College. This ASHP-ACPE accredited school offers a pharmacy technician certificate program that can be completed in one year. The program is a total of three consecutive semesters including an externship.
- University of Utah. At this school, you can earn a pharmacy technician certificate at your pace, 100 percent online. The program is accredited by ASHP-ACPE and consists of 400 hours online study combined with 200 hours of outpatient pharmacy work.
- Penn Foster Career School. Penn Foster offers an affordable online Pharmacy Technician training program. More information.
Utah Pharmacy Technician Licensing
It’s required that all pharmacy technicians in Utah be licensed with the Utah Department of Commerce, Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL). You must have your fingerprints taken and prove that you passed one of two exams:
- National Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination (PTCE) administered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
- Exam for Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ExCPT) administered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Employment Levels and Earning Potential
The job outlook for pharmacy techs in Utah looks exceptionally promising. The Projections Managing Partnership has estimated a 30.4 increase in pharmacy tech employment from 2016-2026. That’s an extremely fast growth rate compared to that of the entire U.S.: 12 percent. It’s also expected that the state will see an average of 480 pharmacy tech job openings per year.
Utah pharmacy technicians are paid well, too. In 2018, the BLS reported a median income of $17.66 per hour for these specialists within Utah. That’s about two dollars higher than the median income for pharmacy technicians across the country.
Where Should You Work?
By far, Salt Lake City is a promising option for new pharmacy technicians in Utah. In 2018, 2,020 pharmacy technicians worked in this city. They were also paid the highest in the state, with a median income of $17.98 per hour. The Ogden-Clearfield area is another good choice. This area pays well, with a median income of $17.76 per hour, and has the highest pharmacy tech employment levels per 1,000 jobs in the state.
Whether you begin your career in Salt Lake City, the Ogden-Clearfield area or anywhere else in Utah, it’s likely that you’ll find plenty of pharmacy technician opportunities. The population that needs medication continues to grow, and new medications continue to hit the market with advances in technology. A pharmacy tech career path is an investment in a stable future.
All School Listings
- Eastern Utah nonmetropolitan area
- Logan, UT-ID
- Ogden-Clearfield, UT
- Provo-Orem, UT
- Salt Lake City, UT
- St. George, UT
- West Central Utah nonmetropolitan area
1301 North 600 West, Logan, Utah 84321Pharmacy Technician – Certificate Program
Bridgerland Applied Technology College’s Certificate-level Pharmacy Technician program is based at their campus in the city of Logan, UT. The college has in the order of 593 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The school is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education.* Fees for tuition are generally about $3,833 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,430, depending on the program.
550 E 300 S, Kaysville, Utah 84037-2699Pharmacy Technician – Certificate Program
The Certificate program at Davis Applied Technology College can be taken at their campus in Kaysville in Davis County, Utah. The majority of of the school’s 2,769 students are on 2-year programs. The school has institutional accreditation from the Council on Occupational Education.* Fees for tuition are about $4,260 per year, while books and supplies may cost in the order of $1,522, although this varies from program to program.
1506 S. Silicon Way, Saint George, Utah 84770Pharmacy Technician – Certificate Program
The Certificate program at Dixie Applied Technology College is taught at their campus in the city of Saint George. The college has in the order of 165 students in total, with the majority of students on < 2-year programs. Dixie Applied Technology College has institutional accreditation from the Council on Occupational Education.* Tuition fees for the Medical Assisting program are, as a rough guide, about $1,827 per year, while books and supplies may cost in the order of $404. Program completion is normally 12 months.
2500 S. State Street, Salt Lake City, UT 84115Pharmacy Technician – Program
The program is taught at their location in Salt Lake City. The program is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.* This program has AHSP candidate status.
200 N Washington Blvd, Ogden, Utah 84404-4089Pharmacy Technician – Certificate Program
The Certificate program at Ogden can be taken at their Weber Applied Technology College campus in the city of Ogden, UT. The college has in the order of 2,625 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The cost of tuition is likely to be in the order of $4,091 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $1,539, as necessitated by the chosen program.
1100 E Lagoon St 124-5, Roosevelt, Utah 84066Pharmacy Technician – Certificate Program
The Certificate program at Uintah Basin Applied Technology College can be taken at their campus in the town of Roosevelt. Most of the school’s 1,238 students are on short programs of under two years. Uintah Basin Applied Technology College has institutional accreditation from the Council on Occupational Education.* Fees for tuition are about $1,480 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $863, depending on the program.
* Accredition status and tuition fees are correct at the time of last update and are sourced from the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college or university prior to application.