President-elect Trump & Immigration/Visa fears of International Medical Graduates

– Mashal Butt.

International medical graduates (IMGs) dream to give United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) which, is a licensing exam allowing medical students cum professionals to practice medicine (residency) within the U.S.

However, in the wake of the U.S. Presidential elections 2016, there has now been a wave of fear and uncertainty instilled within the medical students all around the world.

Arslan Mahmood, an M.B.B.S. graduate from Army Medical College (AMC) Rawalpindi, agrees with the notion of the fear element.

“There is an element of fear now and students are starting to think of a backup plan,” said Mr. Mahmood. “I have a friend who is scheduled to appear for USMLE exam next month but since the elections, he has now gotten himself a date for PLAB (Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board; required to practice medicine in the U.K.) exam too.”

Concerned individuals asking about options other than the U.S. to pursue medicine on the day of elections. Source: USMLE Step 1 Preparation Forum
Source: USMLE Step 1 Preparation Forum

Immigration/Visa ambiguity

Sohaib Khan, final year M.B.B.S. student at Dow University of Health Sciences Karachi, further extended the narration on the fear element by connecting it to President-elect Trump’s proposed strict visa policies.

“The (medical) students are much more worried about the impending new visa policies and not the residency programs as much,” said Mr. Khan.

Trump issued a policy paper on Immigration in 2015 in which he stated to make it difficult for non-citizens to get visas and to eliminate the J-1 visa program (a non-immigrant visa program for foreign youth to work in the US).

Another medical prospect concerned about possible visa restriction on the day of the elections. Source: USMLE Step 1 Preparation Forum

Heyyan Khalil, an M.B.B.S. graduate from AMC and pursuing USMLE, believes that medical students should not fear the impending new visa policy.

“I think the policies will remain the same by and large,” said Mr. Khalil, who is hopeful of a career in the US. “The immigration process might get a bit difficult but they will not stop giving immigration to IMGs.”

Mr. Khalil’s statement holds substance since the above-mentioned termination of J-1 visa program is no longer a part of Trump’s immigration policies.

Need for International Medical Graduates (IMGs)

Taimur Durrani, an M.B.B.S graduate from AMC, also believes that the immigration right to IMGs will not come to a halt.

“Trump as President-elect is definitely an obstruction for international graduates because of his xenophobic stance during the election campaign,” said Mr. Durrani, who is currently pursuing USMLE. “But, there is a shortage of doctors in the US and they rely on IMGs to come and occupy some of the residency seats.”

The U.S. Elections and the IMGs. Source: USMLE Forums

Trump also seems to identify the potential in international graduates. He tweeted the following tweet right after his aforementioned immigration policies surfaced:-

When foreigners attend our great colleges & want to stay in the U.S., they should not be thrown out of our country. – @realDonaldTrump. 18th August 2015, 10:42pm.

Mr. Khan believes that the students should take the present unsettled circumstances as “an addition to their resolve” rather than giving up because the U.S. healthcare system thrives on IMGs. Therefore, the best way to go about the present uncertainty is to be hopeful and not abandon any plans of pursuing a medical career in the U.S.

Source: USMLE Step 1 Preparation Forum



8 reasons why Manchester United are struggling.

Once the kings of English football, Manchester United now find themselves struggling after the retirement of their long-serving manager, Sir Alex Ferguson. To fill the shoes of their former esteemed manager, Man United have fired their last two mangers.

With Jose Mourinho (another highly reputable manager) taking the reigns recently, Man United still cannot seem to bounce back to their old self. Here are 8 reasons why I think they are struggling:-

1. Unreal Expectations

Since Sir Alex’s departure, everyone associated with Man United expects the next manager to instantly pick up from where he left off, ignoring the difficulty and high stature of the job at hand.


2. Ignoring the Reality

Spoiled with success over the years, Man United supporters want the same positive results week in and week out. They are ignorant to the reality of the situation Man United is surrounded by.


3. Lack of strong management

Because of high expectations and ignoring the reality, Man United’s Board take hasty measures (sacking managers and big spending) thus, losing the much needed back-bone to sustain external pressures because of bad result.


4. Premature sacking of managers

Managers are sacked before they can make a mark on on the team. This brings the club back to square one.


5. Reckless Spending

Buckling under pressure, Man United has resorted to the easy way out by buying expensive and most of the time, unwanted players to somehow improve results.


6. Participating in the Rat Race

Man United, like everyone else, is now adopting the same measures to climb the ladder of success instead of staying true to their roots.


7. Failure to identify the real problem

Man United is failing to identify that the problem at hand needs a slow, long term solution than a quick, short term one.

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8. Sidetracking from the ‘United’ way

Youth, long-term plans, loyalty and persistent natures are the ‘United’ way of football. Sidetracking from this is the crux of the struggles faced by Man United.


Follow-up Report – Reflection

For the course’s final assignment, we had to do a follow-up story on a news article from Pakistani media. It sounded like a pretty easy task, didn’t end up being easy.

I found a bank robbery story in DAWN paper and instantly decided to do a follow-up on it. The original story had on lookers and the SSP Operations Rawalpindi as sources. For my follow-up, I decided to make the bank, the SSP and someone from a security company as my source to make security lapses leading to the robbery as my story’s focus.

My first source, the SSP Operations Rawalpindi: It took me a day and a half i.e. 22 calls to get through to him. It was so frustrating repeating the same sentences to the SSP’s operator 22 times. However, in the end, the statements I got from him made it all seem worth it.

My second source, the bank: Well, this source came at a huge monetary and almost life costing price as I was involved in an accident while on my way to the bank. I blame the DAWN paper for the accident as they got the bank location in their paper wrong i.e. claimed it was UBL’s Committee Chowk branch when actually, it was the satellite town branch which was robbed.

Also, there was another discrepancy in the original story i.e. the police claimed they had issued notices to the bank to tighten their security when the bank had actually not received any such notices.

My third source, the security company official: Perhaps, the most reachable source of the assignment. His statements helped me in highlighting my story’s ‘security lapse’ focus.

Writing the follow-up was no problem. When this semester started, I had no idea how to write a news-story, what is the format, how does it work. But now, it all came naturally to me. I knew how to make attributions correctly, how to add transitions, how to give the story a unified and gelled look.

I guess, I really learned from this course, irrespective of the self-doubts I had during the entire semester.

The lesson this assignment taught me was how Pakistan’s leading media fail to legitimize their source’s claims and also fail to correctly report the incident in the first place.

Photo-journal Assignment – Reflection

This assignment was both stressing and fun at the same time. Yet, I would categorize this as my most favorite assignment to date.

The topic my group members and I chose was to show police as an integral part of society instead of focusing on the negative image of the profession created within our society.

The stressful part of the assignment was to get hold of police officials. In our first try, we were unsuccessful as they thought we are undercover journalists. After putting in a few calls here and there, we finally got hold of police officials.

Even then, they were suspicious of us having negative motives. Eventually, we got the material we needed, statements and pictures.

The fun part was intermingled with the stressing part. Making the audio-visual was fun. Taking the interviews and pictures was fun.

All in all, we really enjoyed doing this assignment. Traveling to police stations was tiring but the end result was all worth it.

The lesson we learned doing this assignment was the was the relationship of distrust between media professionals and police in our society. They both, frankly, hate each other. Police’s complains were of media being unethical which, is true. This shows how there is a strong need for educated media professionals in our society.


Brief: Develop a radio spot for Pantene’s TVC ad utilizing the big idea (“Don’t let labels hold you back”) using a creative execution technique. (50 words max)

Execution Technique: Comparison.

Radio Spot: When he shows emotion, he is sensitive. When you show emotion, you are whiny. When he is headstrong, he is independent. When you are headstrong, you are prude. Don’t let labels hold you back. Be strong and shine with Pantene Pro. (41 words)


Brief: Develop a set of 3 print ads for Pantene, using the big idea (“Don’t let labels hold you back”) presented in the TVC given to you.

Execution Technique: The execution technique used in the TVC is “Slice of Life.”

The following 3 print ads are extension of the TVC using the big idea “Don’t Let Labels Hold You Back.” These print ideas show how women are unfairly labelled both in their work life and social life.

First Print Ad – Work Place

1 brief 9

A male doctor is preferred over a female one.

Second Print Ad – Social Life

2 Brief 9

A male football fan is passionate however, a female football is just seeking attention because of the notion, “women don’t understand sports.”

Third Print Ad – Social Life

3 brief 9

A male driver driving with confident is acceptable but a female driver driving with confident is a show-off.


a) Explain the big idea in one sentence.
b) Use the same idea to create another set of 3 ads for Australian Tourism.

a) The big idea is people finding their inner self, their identity by traveling to far off places. They come with something particular in mind but leave with an understanding of themselves. This idea is connected to Australia’s landscapes, beauty, cultural tribes and tropical savannas.

b) The 3 ads for Australian Tourism, with their copy are as follows.

1st Ad


brief 8 1
Arnhem Land( Picture retrieved from Travelling In The NT)

Copy: (On the bottom left side) Arrived planning to see the countryside. Departed with historical stories about from the past.
It’s true what they say: to find yourself sometimes you need to lose yourself. In Australia they call this going ‘walkabout.’ And with Arnhem Land’s rich history and river crossings, it’s no wonder people are finding themselves here everyday. Visit to find out how you can go walkabout.

2nd Ad

brief 8 2
Savannah Way (Picture retrieved from Savannah Way – Australia’s Adventure Drive)


Copy: (On the bottom right side) Arrived to explore northern territories. Departed with an experience of cycling across the Savannah way.
It’s true what they say: to find yourself sometimes you need to lose yourself. In Australia they call this going ‘walkabout.’ And with Savannah’s way self-drive route, it’s no wonder people are finding themselves here everyday. Visit to find out how you can go walkabout.

3rd Ad

brief 8 3
Gold Coast (Picture retrieved from Gold Coast –

Copy: (On the bottom left side) Arrived to see scintillating buildings. Departed with a ‘paradise on earth’ experience.
It’s true what they say: to find yourself sometimes you need to lose yourself. In Australia they call this going ‘walkabout.’ And with Surfers Paradise beach sunbathing in the glory of nature, it’s no wonder people are finding themselves here everyday. Visit to find out how you can go walkabout.