The Rapidian

Local tuition-free pharmacy technician program accepting applications

West Michigan Center for Arts + Technology (WMCAT) is currently enrolling adults for September training programs in growing health care support fields. Interested students encouraged to attend free informational sessions.
WMCAT Pharmacy Technician student Jennifer Washington honing in on her expertise within the classroom

WMCAT Pharmacy Technician student Jennifer Washington honing in on her expertise within the classroom /WMCAT

I'm interested! Where do I learn more?

Attend a free information session held at WMCAT on Monday, June 19 at 9 a.m. & Monday, June 26 at 9 a.m. For more information, visit: wmcat.org/adult-programs.

WMCAT's pharmacy technician Class of 2016 pictured at their White Coat Ceremony.

WMCAT's pharmacy technician Class of 2016 pictured at their White Coat Ceremony. /WMCAT

Have you received your high school diploma or General Education Development (GED)? Do you live in Kent County, receive some form of public assistance, and have no record of a felony?

Are you looking for a meaningful career that can give you income security?

If you’ve answered “yes” to these questions, the West Michigan Center for Arts + Technology (WMCAT) has an opportunity for you.

WMCAT is seeking adult students for a tuition-free pharmacy technician training program! The nine-month program, sponsored by Meijer Inc., begins in September and includes externships, skill development, and career placement assistance. WMCAT encourages those who are interested to attend a free information session held at their facility (98 E. Fulton St., Grand Rapids, Michigan, 49503) on Monday, June 19 at 9 a.m. and Monday, June 26 at 9 a.m.

Pharmacy technicians can work in a variety of settings, including retail, hospital, specialty pharmacies, or long-term care facilities. And the job field looks promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, availability of pharmacy technician jobs is expected to grow nine-percent between now and 2024. The national median pay is $14.86 an hour.

“WMCAT opened doors for me I could have never opened myself,” said Jasmine Parks, a 2017 graduate of the WMCAT pharmacy technician training program. “Because of WMCAT I’m able to think further out. I can see what I want to contribute to people by being a pharmacy technician.”

Parks will join her classmates at WMCAT’s 2017 Adult Graduation ceremony held on Thursday, June 15 at 6 p.m. at St. Cecilia Music Center located at 24 Ransom Ave. NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503. The event is open to the public. Parks has already started her career at Spectrum Health thanks to WMCAT’s pharmacy technician program.

“At WMCAT we want to provide training opportunities for under or unemployed adults looking to achieve sustained income security through a rewarding career,” said Jamon Alexander, adult program director at WMCAT. “What makes our work unique is that we build an intentional, personalized journey with each student that focuses on goals, addresses challenges, and creates a community of support.”

WMCAT’s Adult Career Class of 2016 achieved the following benchmarks:

  • 35 students enrolled
  • 91 percent of students completed the program
  • 75 percent of students received job placement in desired career field within six months of graduation
  • Graduates received an average starting wage ranging from $11.21 to $15.59 an hour

The pharmacy technician program is one of three tuition-free training modules offered to under and unemployed adults in Kent County through WMCAT.

To register for WMCAT’s free informational sessions about adult programs, visit: wmcat.org/adult-programs/how-to-enroll. For more information on WMCAT’s adult programs, visit: wmcat.org/adult-programs.

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