Blogs are not edited by PJ staff*. The opinions expressed in this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Pharmaceutical Journal.
*Blog pieces that have previously been printed in the PJ and Clinical Pharmacist are edited.
I thought I'd just write a little blog about my experiences so far with applying for pre-reg places. Halfway through my third year feels very early to be applying for a job I won't start for 18 months, but nevertheless I have been thoroughly researching my options and discussing it in detail with...well, anyone who'll listen really! It's not just about a job, or hospital or community, it's about deciding where you'll live and how you'll start your working life. Basically, it feels like a huge decision and my first grown-up choice...a much bigger deal than choosing which university to go to somehow!
I was looking to apply to hospital and community, but this seems tricky to do. At a recent pre-reg fair I spoke to many of the main community employers in the area, and they all said that if I was offered a place I'd be expected to accept it in August, with interviews being held in June or July. However, the hospital aren't even holding their interviews until September - this means holding out for a hospital place could be risky, and if you don't get a hospital place then you could end up without any of your first choice pre-regs.
I do think it would be much fairer and easier if there was a way that this could be made better - for example, a single deadline for the student to accept any offers by and then a "clearing" system like UCAS, or if the community pharmacies and hospital pharmacies could work to the same timetable. We have been told to apply for as many pre-regs as possible, but if you really want to work in hospital pharmacy then there doesn't seem to be much point in applying for a lot of community places as you'll have to turn them down before you've even had your hospital interview. There's a lot to think about! So what with all this to consider, not to mention the visa issues for international students, coursework deadlines and exam time looming this term is a little stressful and has a lot riding on it - I can't wait for a rest before my placement starts this Summer!