If you’re looking to pursue a rewarding career in an essential healthcare profession, Alaska offers a variety of colleges and vocational schools with pharmacy tech programs.
When most people think of pharmacies, they expect to see them in hospitals or within the country’s many drug store chains. However, pharmacies have sprung up in department stores, grocery chains and ambulatory service centers, which makes it an exciting career to pursue. We’ll give you some helpful info on what a pharmacy tech career in Alaska looks like, but first, let’s see what the education landscape is like.
Alaska State General Information and Data
Here’s some general education info about the state of Alaska.
- There are 5 four-year institutions in Alaska; the national average is 56.
- There are 2 two-year institutions, while the national average is 33.
- The total male fall enrollment in Alaska is 12,761, while the total male fall enrollment at the national level is 171,951.
- The total female fall enrollment in Alaska is 19,645, lower than the national average of 228,592.
Pharmacy Technician Careers in Alaska
You may not know this, but Alaska ranks #4 as the top paying state in the country for pharmacy technician careers. To help you decide if a career as a pharmacy tech may be ideal for you, let’s see what pharmacy tech jobs in Alaska are like:
- There are 500 pharmacy technicians currently employed in the state of Alaska.
- The state projects that there will be 540 pharmacy technicians by 2026, an employment change of 8%.
- The annual mean 10th percentile wage for pharmacy technicians in Alaska is $27,170.
- The annual mean 90th percentile wage for pharmacy technicians in Alaska is $51,150.
If you’re undecided about pursuing a career as a pharmacy tech, you might want to investigate other careers in the healthcare field. Here’s the mean 10th percentile wages for other health-related careers in Alaska:
- Medical Records & Health Information Technicians: $32,540
- Medical Assistant: $31,980
- EMT (Emergency Medical Technician): $27,540
- CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant): $28,920
Frequently Asked Questions about Becoming a Pharmacy Technician in Alaska
Do I need any certification to become a Pharmacy Technician in Alaska?
The state of Alaska does not require certification from pharmacy technicians, but does regulate them.That said, the state does accept ExCPT certification, which is the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians. ExCPT applicants need to be 18 years of age or older, have completed high school or its equivalent, be fluent in the English language (both spoken and written), and have not committed a felony in the five years prior to applying for the certification. Even if you sit for the ExCPT exam, you must submit an affidavit saying that you read the state’s statues and then have it signed by a pharmacist verifying that you completed the necessary training to work in the state of Alaska.
Which certifications are approved in Alaska?
As stated above, the state of Alaska accepts the ExCPT certification, which is the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians, accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA).
Am I required to have a license to become a Pharmacy Technician in Alaska?
Yes, you are required to get a license in order to work in Alaska. The Alaska Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licensing—which oversees the Alaska Board of Pharmacy—is in charge of the licensing requirements.
What are the initial requirements to become licensed as a Pharmacy Technician in Alaska?
- You must be at least 18 years older
- You must be able to read, write and speak the English language fluently
- You must have a high school diploma or equivalent
- You must not have been convicted of a felony that affects your ability to perform duties as a pharmacy technician
- You must submit an application fee and a license fee
Does my Pharm Tech License ever expire in AK?
Yes, the license will expire biennially (every two years) and will require renewal. As of 2019, the biennial renewal fee for a license is $30 or $60 depending on when your license was issued. When renewing your license, you will need to show that you have completed a total of 10 credits hours of continuing education in programs that are approved by the Alaska Pharmacists Association, the Pharmacy Certification Board or the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE).
Is there training required to become a pharmacy tech in AK?
Yes, some level of training is required, usually under the direction of the pharmacist.
Pharmacy Technician Professional Organizations in Alaska
Alaska has some professional pharmacy organizations that are open to pharmacy technician graduates, including:
- Alaska Pharmacists Association (AKPhA)
- National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP)
- American Pharmacists Association (APhA)
Joining such groups is a good idea since networking with your peers and others in the same field may alert you to all sorts of career. You may meet professionals who can give you advice about continuing your education and helping you prepare for the challenges of a career path as a pharmacy technician. These associations may charge annual fees for membership.
How do I contact the State Board?
Alaska Board of Pharmacy
Alaska Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development
Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing
P.O. Box 110806
Juneau, AK 99811-0806