Technology creates opportunities for pharmacy technician grad

female pharmacy technician reviewing container of drugs standing beside computer

Michelle Stevenson ‘04 is a graduate of the Pharmacy Technician diploma program. Since graduation, she has had a successful career in Hamilton with a lot of different experiences and opportunities.

Upon completing the program in December of 2004 a job opportunity presented itself almost immediately. By February she had secured a full-time position with Hamilton Health Sciences.

While at Mohawk, Michelle did her hospital placement at McMaster Children’s Hospital, part of Hamilton Health Sciences, which gave her hands-on experience. She notes that it has played a lot into what she does now on a regular basis and that it was helpful to get that experience in a real-world environment. “I accelerated my career by making connections at my placement,” says Michelle.

She then moved to the next phase of her career with a position at Juravinski Hospital (formerly known as Henderson Hospital). There, she gained experience working in all of the rotations of the drug distribution system. Halfway through her time working at Juravinski, she was given an opportunity to expand her knowledge and progress her career by being seconded to the Pharmacy Automation Team. During that time, she carried out various projects throughout many Hamilton Health Sciences’ hospitals. Along with her team, they introduced unit dose automated dispensing cabinets, a closed-loop narcotic system, as well as a Bedside Medication Verification (BMV) through barcoding and electronic medication administration (eMAR) records.

Her career came full circle when she moved into a senior role back at McMaster Children’s Hospital. Today, she is the Senior Pharmacy Technician, where she supports and trains technicians as the organization continually changes. She says, “I absolutely love my job. I’ve been involved in many projects and implementations over the years and I think that it’s a great opportunity for new staff to come in and know there’s so much more to pharmacy than dispensing drugs.”

Michelle has experienced the endless possibilities that Hamilton Health Sciences has to offer when you begin your path at Mohawk. For students considering a similar career Michelle shares, “there are other departments you can get involved in, there’s automation coming down the pipeline and there are big projects ahead. It’s good to get your foot in the door now and experience all the change.”

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