*An advanced degree is required to become a doctor of pharmacy.
Pharmacists dispense prescription medications and offer expertise in the safe use of prescriptions. They also may provide advice on how to lead a healthy lifestyle, conduct health and wellness screenings, provide immunizations, and oversee the medications given to patients. Some Pharmacists who own their pharmacy or manage a chain pharmacy spend time on business activities, such as inventory management and marketing.
All pharmacy jobs interact with the public, so good communication skills are important.
MCC’s Transferable Liberal Arts Associate of Arts Degree (AA)
Marshalltown Community College offers a 64-credit Liberal Arts Associate of Arts (AA) transfer degree. The AA degree transfers to Iowa’s Regent universities as well as the majority of private colleges and universities in the Midwest and beyond. The link under Degrees Awarded (below) specifies the program course requirements and electives.
Admissions Partnership Program with Iowa State, UNI and Iowa
MCC participates in the Admissions Partnership Program with Iowa State University, the University of Northern Iowa and the University of Iowa to enable MCC students to transfer credits seamlessly to any of the Iowa Regent universities. Participants are dual-enrolled at MCC and the university with access to academic advising and student services at both institutions. The universities guarantee admission into the desired degree program, provided all requirements are met. Ask the MCC Admissions Office for more information!
Other MCC Advantages
- Smaller class sizes with opportunities to know and network with professors on a personal level
- MCC graduates have the lowest total debt on graduation of any Iowa community college
- Generous Financial Aid and Scholarship opportunities
Pharmacy Careers & Job Outlook
Prospective Pharmacists are required to have a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree, a postgraduate professional degree. In August 2017, there were 128 Doctor of Pharmacy programs fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education. Admission requirements vary, but all Doctor of Pharmacy programs require applicants to take courses such as chemistry, biology, and physics. Most programs require at least two years of undergraduate study, although some require a bachelor’s degree. Most programs also require applicants to take the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT).
After graduating from a Pharm.D. program, Pharmacists must also be licensed by the state, which requires passing two exams. Pharmacists must take continuing education courses throughout their career to keep up with the latest advances in pharmacological science.
The majority of Pharmacists are employed in pharmacies and drug stores, but they may also work in hospitals, grocery stores, department stores, and other retail establishments.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook, the 2017 median pay for Pharmacists was $124,170 per year; the job outlook through 2026 calls for a 6% growth in employment, about as fast as average for all occupations. The 2017 median pay for Pharmacy Technicians with a high school diploma (or equivalent) was $31,750 per year; the job outlook through 2026 calls for a 12% growth in employment (faster than average), which may provide a significant advantage to those with a college diploma.
You can find additional up-to-date information on the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook website: