My Starting Point – Mayra Ruiz Gallegos – Settling In

Mayra Ruiz GallegosHi, it’s Mayra!  Thanks for following my journey through the Pharmacy Technology program at the Mesa campus. Last time I shared my thoughts on orientation and the first day of class. Today I’m going to share a little about settling in, how I organize my schedule and try to give you a feel for the campus.

The First Week

The first week was a little nerve-wracking to be honest; in the first couple of days you might feel a little overwhelmed because you’ll get so much information. There are a lot of rules and regulations, tests and such. But it does get easier.

When you go into the first session of class, a foundation class, you’ll be with people on different programs. In my class I’m with Medical Assisting, Dental Assisting, Veterinary Assisting, and other Pharmacy Technology students…It’s a great way to meet people on other programs. You’ll be surprised at the range of people in class, some older, some younger, all with different experiences that have brought them here.

I go to school from 6pm to 10pm four nights a week – Monday through Thursday – and I work from 7am to 3.30pm in a mail-order pharmacy. At first I thought going to school at night would be difficult because I’d be tired, but honestly it’s not been difficult so far – it’s not been tiring yet. The atmosphere is very upbeat and energetic, so you can’t get bored or fall asleep in class! I like my schedule! 

Getting Organized

The teachers are very helpful getting you organized; on Thursdays they give us a ‘plan ahead’ schedule I guess you’d call it. It’s a sheet of homework topics. It tells us what the week ahead is going to look like, what we’re going to cover and when things are due, so that definitely helps me get organized and be better prepared.

They also provide us with a date-book where we write down what we’ve done every day we go into class. They actually check that you’re using it! It really helps me stay organized and focused. When you first start they’re very good about helping you, and making sure you have a set schedule. They just don’t throw you out there and leave you to it. They give you an overview of the week so you can be prepared.

Get your Priorities Straight

Definitely one of the biggest things you need to know is that you’re going to have to dedicate a lot of your spare time to school if you want to succeed because there is a lot of homework. For people like me who have a job and go to school it can get difficult, so you do have to cut back on your social life and your weekends.

On Campus

Practice DollsThe campus is near the Fiesta Mall in Mesa, AZ. It’s made up of three buildings all within about a mile of each other. The campus is a very inviting place, everyone’s really friendly and nice. It has a real positive atmosphere. The campus is very clean, and they have security on site and outside.

In my first blog I told you how upbeat and friendly everyone was during the enrollment process, well I honestly thought it would be different once I actually got to class. But it’s not. I love my instructor, she’s very good about asking us if we need anything. She tells us that her door is always open! The Program Director even gave me his direct phone number in case I had any concerns. And Cierra, from Enrollment Services, has stayed in touch in case I have any questions or issues.

I’ll soon be done with the introductory ‘Foundations for Achievement’ course; I’m excited to start my core program. I’m looking forward to learning how to mix and make up pain medications; I’m kind of excited about how we’re going to process those, experimenting to make our own pills, because I’m kind of a hands-on person.

Thanks for checking in again! Next time I’ll tell you all about completing this first class, and all about the first week or two of the core part of my program!