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Which School to prepare me for Pharmacy?

A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
I want to go to a school with a good rep but will also provide me with a good experience.

School options:Queens, McMaster,

I would like to study at one of these schools for 2 years and then apply to UFT's pharmacy program as it has one of the best reps. However I would like to enjoy my 2 years in a Life Science program, therefore UFT/Waterloo seems to be out of the option.

I heard UBC and McGuil are like 90% to get in which is a no no.

My plan is to go to McMaster as I have repeated courses and I have private schooled english.

What I'm wondering is if you know UFT takes transfer credits from McMaster. This way assuming I finish pharmacy prog @ UFT and transfer my credits from mcmaster to UFT, i will be able to get TWO Uft degrees ( Life Science/Pharmacy)if i wish to finish my life science degree.

I only want to get my degrees from UFT because.. i would like to work in America.
Canadians get taxed waaaay to much.


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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
Pharmacy employers aren't going to care where you got your bachelor's of life science (they most likely won't care where you got your BPharm either).

Nevertheless, there is a "residency requirement" for degrees being granted from a certain institution. At Western, to complete a four-year Western degree, you needed to complete at least 15.0 credits (of 20.0) at Western. I'd imagine U of T would be the same, allowing no more than 5.0 credits to be transferred for credit from another institution. This shouldn't be a big deal because having a bachelor's degree in life science really won't help you, especially when you only really just completed two years of life science (yes, you could get a bachelor's degree out of it, but anyone looking at your application is going to realize that all you did was complete two years).

If you're a penny pusher, then moving to the States to make more money may not be the best idea. You're going to have to do a PharmD, which could run you $40,000+ and a year or two of lost wages, so, really, it would cost you at least $120,000 (+ interest, assuming you'll have to finance) and up to $300,000 in direct costs and opportunity cost. You will get paid like $10,000 more a year for working down in the States though, so that counts for something. The taxes aren't a big difference. You'd probably make $110,000 a year in the States. This will cost you approximately $22,793 in FEDERAL income taxes (http://www.dinkytown.net/java/Tax1040.html); your after-tax income = $87,207. Take off another $3,000-6,000 in state income tax, unless you go to a state that doesn't have income tax. If you work in Canada, you'll make $100,000 a year (which = ~$90,000 taxable income), and you'll pay $23,059 in taxes if you live in Ontario, leaving you with an after-tax income of $76,941 (http://lsminsurance.ca/calculators/canada/income-tax). vs $81,000 to $87,000 in the States (remembering that you'll have to do a very costly PharmD - 120K to 300K). You'll also notice that you're really not paying much more in income tax by living in Canada; you might even be paying less.
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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
Thanks a lot for the information you've provided me. T_T. I'm a bit sad, so it means it'll take me like at least 12+ years before i actually benefit by working in the states?

Nooooooooooo. I don't know much about these tax things but I thought all you had to do was a test in U.S.A to show that you can work in their country, damn.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
Are you in grade 8?

2 years in undergrad + 4 years for BScPharm + 1 or 2 years for PharmD = 7 or 8 years, 10 years if you have to finish your undergraduate degree.

Whether you need a PharmD or not will depend on the exact situation. As a Canadian BScPharm, you're going to be at a disadvantage, as you're competing with American PharmDs. Some pharmacies and some states might require that you have a PharmD.

But, yes, you will absolutely have to write a couple exams.
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A photo of VegaKrazmych VegaKrazmych
Protip: Schooling in America will always be more expensive, if you go to a decent school.
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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
No, I'm not in grade 8. I always thought i only had to do years 2 years of undergrade + 4 years for the pharm program and i'd be finished.

What is this PharmD? I'm assuming its easier to find a job if you have it.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
It's the only available option for prospective pharmacists in the US (and this will be true in Canada too in about 10 years). In Canada, it will give you an edge when applying for positions other than those in community pharmacies.
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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
Ehh, 70k or 80k doesnt even seem that much after all that education. Does your pay increase every year?

Geuss life isn't that easy.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
Not really. Pharmacy is awesome in that regard, but it's also crappy in that regard. You start off making 100k, which is a very high starting wage, but that's probably what you'll make for the rest of your life (inflation-adjusted of course, although pharmacy wages have been increasing at a rate greater than inflation). If you advance to pharmacy manager, expect to make a bit more. More along the lines of 120-130k/year.

Consultant pharmacists (who travel to nursing homes to review patients' meds) make more like 120-130k too, but you're going to need experience before you'd be able to be a consultant pharmacist. You're also going to need a bit of experience if you want to be a relief pharmacist (pharmacists who work on short-term contractual bases [e.g. to fill in when a pharmacist goes on vacation]), but the pay is more like 120-130k.

Your salary will also depend quite a bit on where you work. Toronto - 90k, non-Toronto GTA and much of Ontario - 100k, Southwestern Ontario - 105-110k, Northern Ontario - 120k. Adjust pharmacy managers, consultant pharmacists, and relief pharmacists' wages accordingly too. Relief pharmacists working in Northern Ontario can make 150k+ if they can find work 48 weeks a year.
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A photo of andrewk512 andrewk512
Matt, are there any things a pharmacist can do, aside from location and becoming a manager/relief/consultant to increase their pay? (Extra schooling etc.)
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
Something I wanted to include in my last post but forgot: owning/franchising/"associating" a pharmacy. Average pharmacy owner probably brings in about 200k (by working as a full-time pharmacist and also running the store, which really isn't that much work).

That's about all I can think of. Extra schooling (PharmD or accreditation as a Certified Diabetes Educator or Asthma Educator or whatever) doesn't really pay off financially, though those things might give you an edge when applying for the higher paying jobs.
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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
Wow I've been wondering about that to. Running your own pharmacy definitely seems to be better but don't you need to purchase your own medicine and stuff or whatever. What's the hardship in this, as I know not everyone does it. By running your own pharmacy you mean your own section without the convenience store or... like owning the entire store. Just wondering.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
The thing is, there are several forms of pharmacy. There's grocery/department store pharmacies, chain drug stores (e.g. Shopper's, Rexall), banner drug stores (Value Drug, Medicine Shoppe), and independents, as well as others.

G/D store pharmacies are run by a pharmacy manager who reports to the store's general manager; there is no ownership opportunity here.

Chain drug stores are run by the company but allow an "associate" to take part ownership in a store (the entire store, not just the pharmacy). This is a pretty sweet position, as you get to operate, say, a Shopper's and, therefore, don't really have to worry about competition, receive help from corporate, and you don't have to contribute your own funds to build the business. And the pay's good. From what I hear, it typically ranges from 200k to 300k. The kick is not just anyone can do it. You have to have quite a bit of experience (preferably at a Shopper's, I'd imagine), proof that you are business saavy (I think a lot of the associates get at least a college diploma in business/management), and proof that you're able to run a store (e.g. having experience as a pharmacy manager).

Banner drug stores and independents are very much alike. Banner drug stores are really just independents that pay a company for support and marketing. An independent drug store is one owned entirely by a person or partners. You can buy an existing one of these (average price = ~$1M) or you can start your own. Starting your own requires purchasing inventory, renting or financing a building, advertising, hiring people, etc... It won't take as much money as it would to buy an existing independent, but whenever you're starting your own business, you are taking considerable risks. You have no idea how successful your business will be, especially in a market dominated by chain drug stores. Banners/independents are a lot more common in small towns than in big cities but can be successful in larger cities if they operate in a niche, e.g. compounding, diabetes treatment, or by setting themselves out to be caring pharmacies that get to know their patients and really help them out.

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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
That's like a huge difference, if your a "associate" in a chain drug store such as shoppers then you'll be making like two times-3 times the salary of an employed pharmacist. I'm geussing a lot of people fight for these spots and i'm guessing only more experienced pharmacists are hired for this position with some business background?
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A photo of Rx Rx
1- what school you go to for undergrad doesn't matter as long as you are able to take required courses.
2- i don't see why schools requiring a 90+ in HS is a nono when you probably need aroud 80+ in university.
3- what school you go to will not matter when you are trying to practice in the states. PharmD is not a requirement to write the licensing exam for individual states.
4- there is a lot more responsibility that comes with managing your own pharmacy. There is also a lot more risk involved. pharmacy is no longer a license to print money as it used to be (at least in Ontario). you don't need a business background, and from what i hear, a lot of it is being at the right place at the right time. you probably have to go somewhere rural to find these oppertunities.
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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid

@Rx wrote
1- what school you go to for undergrad doesn't matter as long as you are able to take required courses.
2- i don't see why schools requiring a 90+ in HS is a nono when you probably need aroud 80+ in university.
3- what school you go to will not matter when you are trying to practice in the states. PharmD is not a requirement to write the licensing exam for individual states.
4- there is a lot more responsibility that comes with managing your own pharmacy. There is also a lot more risk involved. pharmacy is no longer a license to print money as it used to be (at least in Ontario). you don't need a business background, and from what i hear, a lot of it is being at the right place at the right time. you probably have to go somewhere rural to find these oppertunities.



Obviously any undergrad school does not matter, however you don't want to go to school that gives you their marks to easily because you may be accepted into a pharmacy school and eventually get kicked out from not maintaining your marks.

I'm pretty sure going to a renown school gives you an edge when applying for a job assuming that other contestants are equal to you in other aspects.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
You'd have to really do poorly to get kicked out of pharmacy for having poor marks.

On a related note, U of A accepts students who did their prerequisite courses at community colleges (crappy ones too, e.g. Grande Prairie Regional College, Keyano College). And it's in the pharmacy school's interest to only accept students who are likely to succeed in pharmacy school, so, if they felt college attendees were really having a hard time in pharmacy school, they wouldn't accept them.
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A photo of YourAvgKid YourAvgKid
Hmmm, is it just me but most Ontario kids are always assuming that they need to get into a decent under grad school. I mean if that wasn't the case why don't I just go into a university that accepts life science at 70% rather then 85-90%.

Everyone says that ^ but i never see anyone going actually going to less reped uni with high school marks raging from 85-90%. People are challenging themselves? lol.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
Well, for one, high school students tend to think they're knowledgeable on the matter when they're actually not. You'll very likely find that the people who tell you where you go for undergrad doesn't really matter (with a few exceptions) are university students or alumni; the people who tell you that it does matter where you go are mostly high school students. Secondly, even if you realize, particularly in this specific situation, that where you go doesn't matter, then you still may want to go to a prestigious school to feed your ego. Nothing wrong with that. 'Cuz, honestly, who wants to broadcast to the world that they go to Lakehead?
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A photo of mutuba mutuba

@mynameismattgotmlgo wrote
. 'Cuz, honestly, who wants to broadcast to the world that they go to Lakehead?



Go to where?
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A photo of VegaKrazmych VegaKrazmych

@mutuba wrote

@mynameismattgotmlgo wrote
. 'Cuz, honestly, who wants to broadcast to the world that they go to Lakehead?



Go to where?


Lol.
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A photo of mbains mbains
Ryerson Chemistry or Laurier Biology?

What is an easier program? I want to pursue a career in pharamacy, which program is better? HELP HELP HELP...I only have two days to decide :(
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