Pharmacy is one of the fastest growing areas of healthcare and offers a wide range of career opportunities….
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
Jobs where your degree would be useful include:
Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here. To find out what jobs would suit you, log in to My Prospects.
Undertaking a placement or gaining relevant work experience will greatly enhance your employability. It shows potential employers that you are enthusiastic and that you can apply the skills you have learned during your course to the workplace.
Most retail chains offer summer placement programmes in community pharmacy lasting between six and eight weeks. Some employers will recruit their pre-registration trainees from these programmes.
It is also possible to gain experience in a hospital pharmacy, although this may be unpaid and last from a few days to a few weeks.
Experience in a retail environment or voluntary work in a healthcare setting will enable you to develop valuable skills including customer or patient care, and will increase your knowledge of over-the-counter medications.
Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.
The majority of community pharmacists in the UK work in large retail chains or independent pharmacies of various sizes. Others are employed by small or medium-sized chain stores, GP surgeries or health centres.
Around 6,000 pharmacists work in UK hospitals. The majority of hospital pharmacists work for hospitals within the National Health Service (NHS).
Qualified pharmacists can work as locum (temporary replacement) pharmacists, either on a self-employed basis or through an agency.
Pharmacy graduates are also employed by private sector organisations, e.g. pharmaceutical companies and food and drink companies, to work in areas such as research and development, quality assurance, marketing, sales and management.
Studying pharmacy enables you to develop skills specific to the role of a pharmacist and these include:
You also develop a broad range of transferable skills that are very attractive to employers in other sectors:
Generally, only small numbers of pharmacy graduates go on to do further study directly after graduation. This is because a pre-entry postgraduate qualification is not needed to practise as a pharmacist and is rarely advantageous when applying for jobs within the profession. A recent survery indicates that 5% of pharmacy graduates took up full-time postgraduate study. A further 20% were combining work and study.
Pharmacy graduates who want a career in scientific research and development may choose to study for an MSc or PhD, in fields such as biomedical or chemical science. Graduates who decide that they want to pursue careers outside pharmacy may undertake a relevant postgraduate course to broaden their skills and increase their knowledge of other areas.
After graduating, many pharmacy graduates work as community or hospital pharmacists. Some courses offer integrated professional training. Graduates from these courses can go straight into a career as a fully qualified pharmacist without the need to do a pre-registration year.
Six months after graduating, just over 70% of pharmacy graduates are in full-time paid employment. Almost a fifth of graduates combine work and study. This means that almost 90% of students go straight into employment. Of these, just under 97% take positions in the health sector.
|Working and studying||19.6%|
|Scientific research and development||0.6%|
|Retail, catering and bar work||0.6%|
|Associate professional and technical||0.3%|
Find out what other graduates are doing six months after finishing their degrees in What Do Graduates Do?
Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.
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