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Pre-Pharmacy & Pharmacy Technician


The demand for qualified pharmacists is increasing in the growing health care arena. For those with the dedication and ability, a rewarding career awaits. Pharmacists dispense prescription medications to individuals. They answer questions & counsel patients on the proper use of these medications and may advise physicians & other health care professionals about medications and their uses and effects.

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A Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) Degree is required of anyone wishing to practice as a registered pharmacist. Two years of excellent preparation may be received at Rend Lake College to complete the prerequisite coursework in biology, chemistry, humanities, mathematics, physics, and social sciences needed for pharmacy school, based on generalized requirements. Students can then complete a four-year Bachelor’s Degree in biology, chemistry, or a related topic, or transfer straight into a professional pharmacy school. As early as possible, students should select the pharmacy school to which they intend to transfer and follow the specific guidelines set forth by that institution.

Pharmacy Technician

The health care field continues to grow, and with it comes more demand for prescription medications. If you have the drive, good customer service skills and as little as one semester to devote to training, you can be on your way to a career as a pharmacy technician. Rend Lake College's Pharmacy Technician program is a PTCB-Recognized Education/Training Program.

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As a pharmacy technician, you will work under the supervision of a registered pharmacist, helping dispense prescription medications to customers in pharmacies and hospitals. The ability to provide good customer service, pay attention to detail, and stay organized, plus a good math background, will be helpful qualities. Your duties as a pharmacy technician will include taking prescription information from customers; measuring, packaging and labeling prescriptions; keeping track of inventory; processing insurance information, and more.

Degrees & Certificates in Pharmacy



Associate in Science Degree

A Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) Degree is required of anyone wishing to practice as a registered pharmacist. Two years of excellent preparation may be received at Rend Lake College, but some professional schools prefer that the student transfer at the beginning of the second year, thus taking four years of training at the senior institution. Students should select, as early as possible, the school to which they intend to transfer and follow the specific guidelines set forth by that institution. If students plan to spend a second year at RLC, they may be required to attend a summer session at the professional school to pick up specialized courses normally taught during the second year. Students should consult with an advisor for more information concerning this program.

► Total = 64 Hours

First Semester (16 Cr. Hrs.)

  • CHE 1103 Inorganic Chemistry (see prerequisites) 1, 3 (5)
  • ENGL 1101 Rhetoric and Composition I 1 (3)
  • MATH 1110 Precalculus (5)
  • SOCI 1101 Introduction to Sociology (3)

Second Semester (18 Cr. Hrs.)

  • CHE 1104 Inorganic Chemistry / Qual. Analysis 3 (5)
  • COMM 1101 Principles of Effective Speaking (3)
  • ENGL 1102 Rhetoric and Composition II (3)
  • MATH 1121 Calculus & Analytic Geometry I (5) 1 or
     MATH 1111 Statistics (4)
  • Elective - Fine Arts (3)

Third Semester (16 Cr. Hrs.)

  • BIO 1101 College Biology (5)
  • CHE 2120 Organic Chemistry 3 or
     PHY 1101 College Physics 3(5)
  • PHIL 1201 Logic (3)
  • PSYC 2101 Introduction to Psychology (3)

Fourth Semester (14 Cr. Hrs.)

  • BIO 1104 College Biology II (5)
  • CHE 2121 Organic Chemistry II 3  or
     PHY 1102 College Physics II (5)
  • Elective – Humanities (1)
  • ECON 2101 Principles of Economics I (3)

1 Prerequisite course(s) may be required based test scores.

2 One Fine Arts course and one Humanities course needed to meet IAI core requirements.

3 To guarantee full transfer of credit, students must complete the entire course sequence at the same school before transfer.



Occupational Certificate

Gainful Employment

The Pharmacy Technician certificate program seeks to provide qualified students with the technical skills and knowledge needed to practice in a variety of pharmacy settings. This program will give the student the knowledge base needed to pass the National Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination offered by the Pharmacy technician Certification Board. Pharmacy technicians work under the supervision of a registered pharmacist. All curriculum courses must be completed with a grade of "C" or better.

► Total = 16 Hours

First Semester (16 Cr. Hrs.)

  • PHAR 1201 Pharmacology & Medical Calculations (3.5)
  • PHAR 1202 Pharmacy Technician Practices (3)
  • PHAR 1203 Pharmacy Drug Distribution (3.5)
  • PHAR 1204 Pharmacy Community Clinical (3)
  • PHAR 1205 Pharmacy Hospital Clinical (3)


Program Outcomes

Pharmacy Technician

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the health care delivery system and medical terminology.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of infection control and safety.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of drug classifications and side effects of medications.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of the Pharmacy Technician in the pharmacy industry.
  • Demonstrate ethical behavior in a healthcare environment.
  • Demonstrate understanding of medical insurances, prescription interpretation, pharmacy terms, and abbreviations.
  • Demonstrate understanding of basic concepts of communications, personal and patient interaction, stress management, professional behavior, and legal implications of the work environment.

Pharmacy Tech Interest Form


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  • RLC Pharmacy Tech Program offers gateway to growing field

    INA, Ill. (Nov. 16, 2016) - With just its third semester wrapping up, the Rend Lake College Pharmacy Technician Program is making waves by providing students with an opportunity to enter a rapidly expanding and evolving field. Pharmacy Instructor Shelly Bethard is helping lead the charge, putting her experience in the lab and as a student to prepare people for the work force. Bethard had a...


Employment of pharmacy technicians is projected to grow 20 percent from 2012 to2022, faster than the average for all occupations. This will be due in part to an aging population, necessitating more medications, but also because of increased access to insurance coverage by more people and because of the greater range of services pharmacies are beginning to offer their customers. 1

(1 Source: U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook,

Faculty & Staff

Dean of Allied Health
Phone Extension: 1777
Building: South Oasis
Office: 116
M.A.Ed., McKendree University | B.S., Midwestern State University
Administrative Assistant - Allied Health
Phone Extension: 1251
Building: South Oasis
Office: 104
B.S., Southern Illinois University - Carbondale A.A., Rend Lake College

Allied Health Division
Phone: (618) 437-5321 Ext. 1251
Email: [email protected]
Address: 468 N. Ken Gray Parkway, Ina, IL 62846 Attn: Allied Health
Fax Number: (618) 437-5677 Attn: Allied Health



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Academic Advisement Center
Administration Building, Office 115
[email protected] • 618.437.5321, Ext. 1266

College office hours
Monday - Thursday: 8 AM – 4:30 PM • Friday 8 AM – 4 PM 
Monday – Thursday: 8 AM – 4 PM During Summer