20 Best Pharmacy Schools for Keeping Degree Costs Down

 September 28, 2017
How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

How Student Loan Hero Gets Paid

Student Loan Hero is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). Student Loan Hero does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero is an advertising-supported comparison service. The site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

top pharmacy schools
Logo

We’ve got your back! Student Loan Hero is a completely free website 100% focused on helping student loan borrowers get the answers they need. Read more

How do we make money? It’s actually pretty simple. If you choose to check out and become a customer of any of the loan providers featured on our site, we get compensated for sending you their way. This helps pay for our amazing staff of writers (many of which are paying back student loans of their own!).

Bottom line: We’re here for you. So please learn all you can, email us with any questions, and feel free to visit or not visit any of the loan providers on our site. Read less

If you’re looking for a financially rewarding career, you might want to become a pharmacist. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, pharmacists earn a mean annual wage of $120,270.

However, you can expect to have more debt than your starting salary out of the gate. The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) found that pharmacy school graduates borrowed $157,425 in 2016 to finance their degrees. And that amount doesn’t include undergraduate student debt, which averages $37,172.

To help pharmacy school hopefuls graduate with as little debt as possible, we surveyed 141 schools to find the top pharmacy schools with the lowest combined in-state tuition and mandatory fees. Here are our top 20 picks.

Top pharmacy schools for avoiding huge college costs

1. Florida A&M University College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

  • Annual in-state tuition: $5,161
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $18,693
  • Mandatory fees: $30

The Florida A&M University College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences in Tallahassee, Florida, is one of just two schools surveyed with annual tuition and fees under $10,000 for in-state residents.

With such low tuition and fee costs, you can use the money you save to pay for room and board and other costs you’ll incur at school.

2. Skaggs School of Pharmacy, University of Montana

  • Annual in-state tuition: $5,182
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $23,062
  • Mandatory fees: $6,501

The Skaggs School of Pharmacy in Missoula, Montana, has low tuition but high fees. Applicants also must complete at least 20 hours of volunteer or paid experience serving patients in a pharmacy or other health care setting.

3. Texas A&M University Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $7,632
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $47,592
  • Mandatory fees: $5,798

Located in Kingsville, Texas, the Texas A&M Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy was created to address the shortage of pharmacists in the Texas-Mexico border region. Now, 42 percent of graduates from the program return to the area to help the underserved population.

4. University of Connecticut School of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $11,998
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $34,066
  • Mandatory fees: $2,882

No. 33 in the 2016 U.S. News & World Report list of top pharmacy schools, the University of Connecticut School of Pharmacy also boasts a 98 percent employment rate at graduation, according to its website. The school is in Storrs, Connecticut.

5. Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $13,455
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $24,765
  • Mandatory fees: $2,484

The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Pharmacy ranks No. 36 among the top pharmacy schools in the nation, according to the 2016 U.S. News & World Report rankings.

You can choose from four campuses: Amarillo, Lubbock, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Abilene. That means in-state residents are likely to find a campus nearby and could save on room and board.

6. University of Wyoming School of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $15,198
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $32,164
  • Mandatory fees: $759

The University of Wyoming School of Pharmacy in Laramie, Wyoming, has a 100 percent job placement rate, according to the school’s website. Plus, the cost of living in Laramie is 7 percent lower than the national average, according to Payscale, giving you more opportunities to save.

7. University of Texas at Austin College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $16,794
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $43,412
  • Mandatory fees: $0

Not only is the University of Texas at Austin College of Pharmacy inexpensive, but it’s also No. 3 in U.S. News & World Report’s list of top pharmacy schools in 2016. Although its tuition might not be the cheapest, students don’t have to worry about extra fees.

8. Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers University

  • Annual in-state tuition: $13,741
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $33,117
  • Mandatory fees: $3,383

The Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy in Piscataway, New Jersey, ranks No. 30 in the 2016 U.S. News World & World Report list of top pharmacy schools. However, keep in mind that the average cost of living in nearby Middlesex is 24 percent higher than the national average.

9. Texas Southern University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

  • Annual in-state tuition: $15,467
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $26,619
  • Mandatory fees: $1,736

Located in Houston, Texas, the Texas Southern University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences also ranks among the top pharmacy schools for the lowest out-of-state tuition and fees based on our study. Students can use the money they save to help cover the cost of room and board and other expenses.

10. University of Toledo College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

  • Annual in-state tuition: $8,052
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $17,390
  • Mandatory fees: $9,312

The University of Toledo College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is located in Toledo, Ohio. The school is inexpensive for both in-state and out-of-state students and has an on-time graduation rate of over 90 percent.

11. South Dakota State University College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions

  • Annual in-state tuition: $9,432
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $20,246
  • Mandatory fees: $8,072

The South Dakota State University College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions is light on tuition but heavy on fees. Located in Brookings, South Dakota, the school also offers a Bachelor of Science in medical laboratory science. According to Payscale, the cost of living in nearby Sioux Falls is slightly lower than the national average.

12. North Dakota State University School of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $16,380
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $43,733
  • Mandatory fees: $1,491

The North Dakota State University School of Pharmacy in Fargo, North Dakota, has an 80 percent employment rate at graduation. Although its in-state tuition is inexpensive, out-of-state students face steep costs.

13. Idaho State University College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $17,900
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $36,882
  • Mandatory fees: $10

The Idaho State University College of Pharmacy has three campuses: Pocatello and Meridian, Idaho, and Anchorage, Alaska. The school has a 92 percent on-time graduation rate, but only 58 percent of graduates report gaining employment in the state of Idaho upon graduation.

14. University of Georgia College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $16,310
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $36,850
  • Mandatory fees: $2,266

No. 25 in the 2016 U.S. News & World Report list of top pharmacy schools, the University of Georgia College of Pharmacy has five campuses. Students can attend classes in Athens, Augusta, Albany, Lawrenceville, and Savannah., Georgia.

15. University of North Texas College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $14,480
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $31,080
  • Mandatory fees: $4,687

Located in Fort Worth, Texas, the University of North Texas College of Pharmacy offers several pharmacy-related programs and residencies through the UNT Health Sciences Center. Fort Worth’s cost of living is a little lower than the national average, according to Payscale.

16. James L. Winkle College of Pharmacy, University of Cincinnati

  • Annual in-state tuition $17,600
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $30,528
  • Mandatory fees: $1,678

The James L. Winkle College of Pharmacy in Cincinnati, Ohio, was founded in 1850, making it the fourth-oldest pharmacy school in the nation. It’s also No. 33 in the 2016 U.S. News & World Report list of top pharmacy schools.

17. Marshall University School of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $18,402
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $31,695
  • Mandatory fees: $900

Located in Huntington, West Virginia, the Marshall University School of Pharmacy allows students to complete both their pre-pharmacy coursework and professional program. The school is among the newest pharmacy schools in the country, with its first graduating class finishing in 2016.

18. University of Houston College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $18,662
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $34,627
  • Mandatory fees: $982

No. 44 in the 2016 U.S. News & World Report list of top pharmacy schools, the University of Houston College of Pharmacy has some of the lowest fees of any pharmacy school we surveyed. For the 2016 class, 97 percent of graduates were employed or entered residency.

19. University of South Florida College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $16,610
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $16,610
  • Mandatory fees: $3,295

What sets the University of South Florida College Pharmacy apart from other schools on this list is the fact that out-of-state tuition matches in-state tuition. That makes it affordable for just about anyone to attend.

20. University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy

  • Annual in-state tuition: $12,002
  • Annual out-of-state tuition: $28,252
  • Mandatory fees: $8,290

The University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy is ranked No. 47 in U.S. News & World Report’s 2016 list of top pharmacy schools. It boasts a 96.7 percent employment rate at graduation, and 94.2 percent of graduates say they’d pick the school again if they were to start over again.

Limiting your college costs can save you big time

Finding an inexpensive pharmacy school is an important way to limit your overall college costs and student debt. But once you’ve graduated, don’t let a high starting salary make you complacent about your student loan payments if you have them.

Look for other strategies to pay off your student loans early. For example, research student loan forgiveness programs for pharmacists as well as lenders who might be able to refinance your loans at a lower interest rate.

As you study different ways to eliminate your student debt more quickly, you could save both time and money in the long run.

Top 50 affordable pharmacy schools

If you’re interested in seeing how other inexpensive pharmacy schools compare, we’ve compiled a list of the top 50 based on our methodology.

No. Pharmacy School In-State Tuition and Fees
1. Florida A&M University $5,191
2. University of Montana $11,683
3. Texas A&M University $13,430
4. University of Connecticut $14,880
5. Texas Tech University $15,939
6. University of Wyoming $15,957
7. University of Texas at Austin $16,794
8. Rutgers University $17,124
9. Texas Southern University $17,203
10. University of Toledo $17,364
11. South Dakota State University $17,504
12. North Dakota State University $17,871
13. Idaho State University $17,910
14. University of Georgia $18,576
15. University of North Texas $19,167
16. University of Cincinnati $19,278
17. Marshall University $19,302
18. University of Houston $19,644
19. University of South Florida $19,905
20. University of Rhode Island $20,292
21. Southwestern Oklahoma State University $20,295
22. Washington State University $20,788
23. University of Wisconsin-Madison $21,033
24. University of New Mexico $21,390
25. University of Arkansas $21,632
26. University of Oklahoma $21,685
27. Auburn University $21,752
28. Purdue University $22,026
29. Ohio State University $22,497
30. West Virginia University $22,878
31. Wayne State University $22,983
32. University of Missouri-Kansas City $23,088
33. University of Tennessee $23,412
34. University of Florida $23,692
35. University of Hawaii $24,064
36. University of Mississippi $24,422
37. University of Nebraska $24,586
38. Oregon State University $24,627
39. Northeast Ohio Medical University $24,739
40. University of Iowa $24,874
41. Chicago State University $24,931
42. Ferris State University $25,240
43. University of Kansas $25,698
44. University of North Carolina $26,028
45. Medical University of South Carolina $26,045
46. University of Arizona $26,262
47. Southern Illinois University Edwardsville $26,294
48. University of South Carolina $26,356
49. University of Louisiana at Monroe $26,786
50. University of Kentucky $27,250

Methodology: Student Loan Hero surveyed tuition and fees costs for 141 U.S. pharmacy schools. Rankings were determined by each school’s combined in-state tuition and fees. Room and board costs were not included in the calculations. All data was sourced from the AACP.

Need a student loan?

Here are our top student loan lenders of 2022!
LenderVariable APREligibility 
2.49% – 13.85%1Undergraduate
Graduate

Visit College Ave

2.55% – 11.44%2Undergraduate
Graduate

Visit Earnest

3.25% – 13.59%3Undergraduate
Graduate

Visit SallieMae

0.00% – 23.00%4Undergraduate
Graduate

Visit Edly

3.25% – 9.69%6Undergraduate
Graduate

VISIT CITIZENS

N/A6Undergraduate
Graduate

Visit FundingU

* The Sallie Mae partner referenced is not the creditor for these loans and is compensated by Sallie Mae for the referral of Smart Option Student Loan customers.

1 Important Disclosures for College Ave.

CollegeAve Disclosures

College Ave Student Loans products are made available through Firstrust Bank, member FDIC, First Citizens Community Bank, member FDIC, or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC.. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.

  1. As certified by your school and less any other financial aid you might receive. Minimum $1,000.
     
  2. Rates shown are for the College Ave Undergraduate Loan product and include autopay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.
     
  3. This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a freshman borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 8.35% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $179.18 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $21,501.54. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.

Information advertised valid as of 9/15/2022. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation. Approved interest rate will depend on the creditworthiness of the applicant(s), lowest advertised rates only available to the most creditworthy applicants and require selection of full principal and interest payments with the shortest available loan term.


2 Rate range above includes optional 0.25% Auto Pay discount. Important Disclosures for Earnest.

Earnest Disclosures

Actual rate and available repayment terms will vary based on your income. Fixed rates range from 3.47% APR to 13.03% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). Variable rates range from 2.80% APR to 11.69% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). Earnest variable interest rate student loan refinance loans are based on a publicly available index, the 30-day Average Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) published by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The variable rate is based on the rate published on the 25th day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month, rounded to the nearest hundredth of a percent. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Although the rate will vary after you are approved, it will never exceed 36% (the maximum allowable for this loan). Please note, Earnest Private Student Loans are not available in Nevada. Our lowest rates are only available for our most credit qualified borrowers and contain our .25% auto pay discount from a checking or savings account. It is important to note that the 0.25% Auto Pay discount is not available while loan payments are deferred.


3 Sallie Mae Disclaimer: Click here for important information. Terms, conditions and limitations apply.

4 Important Disclosures for Edly.

Edly Disclosures

1. Loan Example:

  • Loans from $5,000 – $20,000
  • Example: $10,000 IBR Loan with a 7% gross income payment percentage for a Senior student making $65,000 annually throughout the life of the loan.
    • Payments deferred for the first 12 months during final year of education.
    • After which, $270 Monthly payment for 12 months.
    • Then $379 Monthly payment for 44 months.
    • Followed by one final payment of $137 for a total of $20,610 paid over the life of the loan.

About this example

The initial payment schedule is set upon receiving final terms and upon confirmation by your school of the loan amount. You may repay this loan at any time by paying an effective APR of 23%. The maximum amount you will pay is $22,500 (not including Late Fees and Returned Check Fees, if any). The maximum number of regularly scheduled payments you will make is 60. You will not pay more than 23% APR. No payment is required if your gross earned income is below $30,000 annually or if you lose your job and cannot find employment.

2. Edly Student IBR Loans are unsecured personal student loans issued by FinWise Bank, a Utah chartered commercial bank, member FDIC. All loans are subject to eligibility criteria and review of creditworthiness and history. Terms and conditions apply.


5 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

  • Variable Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates are based on the 30-day average Secured Overnight Financing Rate (“SOFR”) index, as published by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. As of September 1, 2022, the 30-day average SOFR index is 2.23%. Variable interest rates will fluctuate over the term of the loan with changes in the SOFR index, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. The maximum variable interest rate is the greater of 21.00% or the prime rate plus 9.00%.
  • Fixed Rate Disclosure: Fixed rate ranges are based on applicable terms, level of degree, and presence of a co-signer.
  • Lowest Rate Disclosure: Lowest rates are only available for the most creditworthy applicants, require a 5-year repayment term, immediate repayment, a graduate or medical degree (where applicable), and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. Rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.

     

    Undergraduate Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 3.25%-10.35% (3.25% – 9.69% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 4.24% – 10.59% (4.24% – 9.93% APR). 

    Graduate Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 3.75%-9.90% (3.75% – 9.68% APR). Fixed interest rates range from  5.22% – 10.14% (5.22% – 9.91% APR). 

    Business/Law Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 3.75%-9.35% (3.75% – 9.16% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 5.20% – 9.59% (5.20% – 9.39% APR).

    Medical/Dental Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 3.75%-9.02% (3.75% -8.98% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 5.18% – 9.26% (5.18% – 9.22% APR). 

    Parent Loan Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 3.25%-9.21% (3.25% – 9.21% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 3.96%-9.50% (3.96%-9.50% APR).

    Bar Study Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 6.58%-11.72% (6.58% – 11.62% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 7.39% – 12.94% (7.40% – 12.82% APR). 

    Medical Residency Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 5.67%-9.17% (5.67% – 8.76% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 6.99% – 10.49% (6.97% – 10.08% APR).


6 Important Disclosures for Funding U.

Funding U Disclosures

Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are made by Funding University which is a for-profit enterprise. Funding University is not affiliated with the school you are attending or any other learning institution. None of the information contained in Funding University’s website constitutes a recommendation, solicitation or offer by Funding University or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities or other financial instruments or other assets or provide any investment advice or service.