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Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Major

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Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences

2,748 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
1,235 Master's Degrees Annually
#13 in Popularity
$123,670 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many pharmacy/pharmaceutical sciences graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Doctor’s Degree 15,507
Bachelor’s Degree 2,748
Master’s Degree 1,235
Graduate Certificate 228
Basic Certificate 31
Associate’s Degree 18

What Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to pharmacy were asked what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. They weighted these areas on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the highest.

Knowledge Areas for Pharmacy Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

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  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

Skills for Pharmacy Majors

A major in pharmacy prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

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  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Abilities for Pharmacy Majors

As you progress with your pharmacy degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

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  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

What Can You Do With a Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Major?

People with a pharmacy degree often go into the following careers:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Health Specialties Professors 25.9% $97,370
Marketing Managers 10.1% $134,290
Medical Scientists, Except Epidemiologists 13.4% $84,810
Pharmacists 5.6% $126,120
Sales Managers 7.5% $124,220

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences?

2,748 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
65% Percent Women
38% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This is one of the most frequently chosen healthcare majors. It is the 13th most popular in the country with 2,748 students graduating with a bachelor’s in pharmacy in 2019. The major attracts more women than men. About 65% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of pharmacy majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Pharmacy Students with Bachelor's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 642
Black or African American 159
Hispanic or Latino 136
White 1,461
International Students 158
Other Races/Ethnicities 192

Geographic Diversity

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in Pharmacy. About 5.7% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • India
  • China
  • South Korea
  • Canada
  • Saudi Arabia

How Much Do Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors Make?

Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary

The U.S. Department of Education found that students who graduated in 2015-2017 with a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy/pharmaceutical sciences made a median starting salary of $38,800 per year. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $30,800 (25th percentile) and $46,000 (75th percentile).

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Note that some of these people may have jobs that are not directly related to a pharmacy degree.

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $122,320 to $140,320 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to pharmacy. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Major  ( 122320 to 140320 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some careers associated with pharmacy require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

How much schooling do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to pharmacy have obtained the following education levels.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 0.9%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 0.4%
Some College Courses 1.3%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 3.3%
Bachelor’s Degree 28.5%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master. 4.6%
Master’s Degree 17.2%
Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level. 0.1%
First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession. 12.7%
Doctoral Degree 19.2%
Post-Doctoral Training 12.2%

Online Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Programs

In 2018-2019, 180 schools offered a pharmacy program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 4 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 1 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 8 1
Bachelor’s Degree 27 16
Post-Baccalaureate 4 0
Master’s Degree 155 19
Post-Master’s 12 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 115 1
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 138 8
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 2 0

Is a Degree in Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Sciences Worth It?

The median salary for a pharmacy grad is $123,670 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 210% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $1,675,400 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to pharmacy.

Major Number of Grads
Nursing 305,309
Allied Health & Medical Assisting Services 99,641
Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants 93,192
Allied Health Professions 86,697
Health & Medical Administrative Services 82,868
Public Health 36,569
Rehabilitation & Therapeutic Professions 28,559
Mental & Social Health Services 27,743
Dental Support Services 26,183
Health Sciences & Services 25,948
Communication Sciences 21,606
Medicine 19,720
Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science 19,354
Somatic Bodywork & Therapeutic Services 11,961
Health/Medical Prep Programs 11,279
Other Health Professions 8,168
Osteopathic Medicine 6,700
Dentistry 6,403
Dietetics & Clinical Nutrition Services 5,877
Alternative Medicine & Systems 3,576
Veterinary Medicine 3,297
Health Aids/Attendants/Orderlies 3,251
Chiropractic 2,608
Optometry 1,747
Advanced Dentistry & Oral Sciences 1,685
Medical Illustration & Informatics 1,624
Ophthalmic & Optometric Support Services 1,044
Medical Science 809
Veterinary Biomedical & Clinical Services 782
Bioethics/Medical Ethics 597
Podiatry 579
Movement & Mind-Body Therapies 444
Alternative Medical Support Services 191
Energy & Biologically Based Therapies 73

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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