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Considering a Post-graduate course? Read this first

Sep 14, 2021

Professional development is often on the mind of pharmacists looking for real career progression.  One topic that often comes up when considering professional development is about post-graduate courses and whether they really offer the benefit in terms of employability and well, more money. 

If you want to get into hospital pharmacy for example, do you need to have a post-graduate in clinical pharmacy? 

Opinions vary, but the resounding answer is no. 

There are many successful hospital pharmacists who entered hospital pharmacy without post-grad qualifications. But it goes without saying that in a competitive environment a post-grad can help your application find its way to the top of the pile.

So what should you do?

First, consider the reason you want to do a post-grad. If it’s just to get a job. Then that may not be reason enough. You need to be interested in what you are learning. A few years ago I completed a Graduate Certificate in Human Nutrition. I genuinely wanted to get into this field and was interested in learning more about it. I loved the course and completing it gave me a sense of fulfillment and achievement. This was something I really needed at the time to stay motivated in my career.   It cost a lot of money though and it didn’t really take me anywhere. But ultimately I don’t regret doing the course. 

Next, spend some time looking into different courses. A clinical pharmacy course is not the only one out there. You could consider a public health qualification like this one for example. I recently completed a Graduate Certificate of Health Professional Education. I've learnt how to teach effectively in the health profession which is something I truly want to improve on. It is in alignment with my goals of providing education and mentorship to pharmacists.  You should be interested in what you are going to study. If you’re not, you’ll find it very difficult to get through the course. 

Consider your time. Studying while working, being a Mum (or a Dad),  and the numerous other commitments pharmacists have these days is hard. I mean, really hard. 

But it is also incredibly rewarding… a welcomed reminder that you do have the skills to succeed in something new.

If you’ve completed (or are completing) a post-grad I’d love to hear about it. Send me an email to [email protected]