Coming into your first year of pharmacy school, you may be worried or may be debating on whether you should work while trying to perform your best and get the most out of being in school. I was in this same boat, seeing my peers at higher levels than me (P2, P3, P4) being able to balance their social lives, school, extra-curricular activities, and work, which seemed so far from what I was able to do at the time. Don’t be afraid to take the chance of applying and receiving the chance to gain so much experience in a pharmacy job! I took this chance and found a hospital pharmacy position at a hospital only fifteen minutes from the school, and it has been one of the greatest ways to gain experience and network within the pharmacy world, after all…the pharmacy world is very small. These jobs that hire students realize that you will not be able to work as much as other employees and are flexible to your schedule, but only you will be able to figure out how much you can handle while maintaining your schoolwork. You will figure it out as you go, don’t worry!
If you plan to work while being in pharmacy school, always know your limits. You may not figure this out until you reach the point where you are a little “in over your head,” but that is a learning experience! You should know what your goals are, whether they are short-term or long-term, before matriculating and how you plan to achieve these so that you can plan your work life and extra-curricular life around these goals. Do not let your hesitations or fears keep you from trying to find a job! Some of the most amazing people I have met have been in the workplace, and you learn so much from a variety of situations while being in practice, that you only hear about in pharmacy school. If you ever have any questions about working while in school, many of your peers would be happy to help! It may be a challenge, in the beginning, to figure out your balance, but it is well worth it in the end!
— Megan Parrish