Licensed pharmacists can work in a variety of settings and typically need to complete at least a graduate degree from an accredited pharmacy school or pharmacy college. Pharmacy jobs and pharmacist jobs are readily available at many medical centers, hospitals, research facilities and nursing homes. Individuals interested in applying for pharmacist jobs must have completed a doctorate degree and obtained necessary license to practice in their State.

Training for Pharmacy Jobs

If you only complete a certification program from a pharmacy school or pharmacy university, you will be able to apply for entry-level pharmacy jobs upon graduation. Most pharmacist jobs for those who do not have a doctorate degree are either technician or assistant positions, such as pharmacy clerks, techs or aides. Many employers that hire these technicians and assistants do provide extensive on-the-job training. You will also need to complete the National Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination that is administered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board.

After completing a doctorate degree program in pharmacy, students can enjoy a variety of full or part-time job opportunities and also consider entering the research field. The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy mandates that all pharmacists have a doctoral degree, or Pharm.D. degree from an accredited college or university, in order to practice, so many students choose to complete the full course of study in one go. The Bachelor of Pharmacy degree program is no longer awarded, and all students interested in pursuing pharmacy jobs must have completed at least two years of professional study and three years of study at a college or university.

Some pharmacists do complete training with a one- or two-year residency program or a fellowship. These training programs typically include intensive research projects and clinicals, and skills learned with this type of training can be helpful when applying for pharmacy jobs in various fields.

Types of Pharmacist Jobs

After completing an accredited training program at a pharmacy school or university, students can specialize in a certain area and obtain credentials as a certain type of pharmacist. Not all pharmacists are trained to work in hospitals or retail stores to dispense medicine. Some work in the field of research, some assist doctors, and others work with radioactive drugs to treat certain types of medical conditions.

Pharmacy jobs are also available in the veterinary field where the pharmacist is trained to dispense medication for pets and farm animals including livestock. When farm animals or herds are facing a disease or become ill, veterinary pharmacists are called upon to assist the veterinarian with the diagnosis and treatment of the illness.

Almost all pharmacists are trained to work with patients by advising them on dosage and medication requirements, and do learn how to dispense prescription drugs according to certain guidelines and rules. Still, many end up working in fields outside of a traditional pharmacy.

Some of the different types of pharmacist jobs include:

  • Home health care pharmacists
  • Nuclear pharmacists
  • Psychiatric pharmacists
  • Veterinary pharmacists
  • General hospital pharmacist
  • Community pharmacist

In addition to the hands-on jobs that involve treating certain diseases and dispensing medication, some pharmacists end up working in the research field. Pharmacy jobs at research centers and universities typically require advanced degrees and the individual may be responsible for conducting different types of experiments, working on research studies and analyzing reports.