While most are out of school for the summer, Front Range Community College (FRCC) is in session offering year-round technical education courses aimed to train and prepare students for real jobs. For those interested in a career in health care, FRCC has partnered with Banner Health to offer valuable, hands-on apprenticeship pathways in two essential areas – medical assistants and pharmacy technicians. As a state-wide initiative, registered apprenticeships offer a high-quality career pathway, specifically for individuals who may already have jobs or a family and are seeking creative ways to gain paid work experience and credentials.
The first two pharmacy technician apprentices completed their program training with Banner last month, part of a 20-week coursework program at FRCC, and will officially graduate in August 2023. Not only did these students receive a traditional classroom education, but they were also paid for on-the-job training while working under the direct supervision of licensed pharmacists at Banner in northern Colorado – a unique opportunity to learn and earn.
“I have really enjoyed the apprenticeship program. I’m a hands-on learner, so this was fantastic for me,” FRCC student and Banner apprentice Danielle Contreraz said. “Everyone I worked with (at Banner) has been fantastic and made working and learning fun for me.”
In a model like this, students like Danielle benefit from an environment of applied learning and the prospect of a permanent position, all while getting paid, while employers like Banner develop talent and establish relationships with the next generation of healthcare professionals to help fill future hiring needs. A win-win!
Apprentices earn a FRCC certificate which allows them to sit for the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE), an official state requirement. The next cohort for the FRCC pharmacy technician apprenticeship pathway working with Banner begins in mid-August. Interested students can apply at frontrange.edu/admissions-aid/apply.html.