Students who figured out how to pay for pharmacy school early on ended up on the right side of the financial equation. Pharmacy school can be costly, however there are many ways prospective students can consider as a way to pay for school.

1. Financial Aid

Financial aid offices understand how to pay for pharmacy school. They are always working with students to find grants, low-interest loans or scholarships to apply for. Financial aid is a great place to go if you need help getting started figuring out how to pay for pharmacy school.

2. Scholarships

Every pharmacy school has a scholarship program students can apply to. Do it! Scholarships may or may not have eligibility criteria. Students should seek out and apply for every scholarship they are eligible to receive. This may take some work, writing essays and filling out applications, but the savings will be worth it. How to pay for pharmacy school could be as easy as earning a few scholarships!

3. Student Loans- borrow smart

Many students end up borrowing some money to help pay for school. This is a great option, if you are borrowing smart. In the U.S., there are federal financial aid options for medical professionals that can assist with extra expenses while going to school full-time, especially during rotations. Some students borrow a lot of money early on, and are left with a lot of debt once they graduate. It is best to take minimal amounts of loans for school, or apply for grants, which do not require repayment. Check out the Federal Aid website for more information.

4. Have a Job

When thinking about paying for pharmacy school, having a job during school may seem scary. It takes a lot of effort and discipline to pay for the entirety of pharmacy school, but many students are able to do just that. Having a job, especially a pharmacy job, allows students to gain invaluable real-life experience as well as earn money to support themselves and pay for pharmacy school.

5. Stay In-State

This tip applies more to non-private institutions, as private schools tend to have the same tuition for both in and out of state students. Many state school’s tuition rates double to triple between in and out of state rates. Students can save a lot of money by staying in-state for pharmacy school. The American Association for Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) lists tuition rate data by school for each year of curriculum here:

6. Attend a Lower-Cost School

Low cost of tuition does not necessarily equal low quality. Figuring out how to pay for pharmacy school can look very different, depending on the cost of the program. If students are able to be flexible in programs, choosing a lower cost program can make it easier to keep overall costs as low as possible.

United States money with writing education fund and How to Pay for Pharmacy School

7. Minimize Living Costs

Limiting living costs can have a major impact on how to pay for pharmacy school. Students who choose to live lavishly will require more funds to do so, and will likely end up in more debt if those funds are received as student loans. Students who are supporting themselves will also find it easier to do if their overall expenses are kept low. Having roommates or living at home and living close to school are some ways hep minimize living expenses.

8. Purchase used books

A great way to reduce the cost of materials for pharmacy school is to buy used books whenever available. Many times students from the year ahead are wanting to pass them on and some universities also offer used textbooks at greatly reduced prices. Textbooks can be incredibly costly, and when there about one for every class it quickly adds up! If you can’t find used textbooks from classmates or the school, try online! P.S.- don’t forget to sell them back or pass them on at the end of the year!

9. Be Your Own Boss

A less popular, yet innovative, way to pay for pharmacy school is to “be your own boss”. A growing trend in America is to become an independent sales person of a product. As a distributor, you are able to purchase the product for wholesale price and sell at retail price. The difference is yours to keep. There are many examples of this type of operation such as Mary KayÒ, Advocare, Thirty-OneÒ, YoungLivingÔ and DoterraÒ Essential Oils, and many more.  

 10. Get creative!

The last time on how to pay for pharmacy school is directed back at you, the reader! Put your mind to work and get creative. There are so many opportunities for pharmacy students from pharmacy technician jobs to clinical trial research, and beyond to help pay for pharmacy school.  Don’t be afraid to try something new!

Don’t forget- pharmacy technicians are the backbone of community pharmacies and are essential to the pharmacy team.