LOS ANGELES, CA – “They’re like cockroaches, I tell you!” exclaims Dr. Sikandar Ahmed at an annual Muslim American Medical Association (MAMA) convention in Los Angeles. “These computer guys are ruining everything!”
What is Ahmed ranting and raving about, you might ask? It’s the sudden surge of computer professionals flooding the market and snatching away fine pieces of an abundant silicon pie.
“I worked too damn hard for this!” shouts Dr. Abbas Ali, a Neurosurgeon at Chicago’s Columbus Hospital. “I spent 23 years in school just to be upstaged by a…a…geek!”With an unprecedented demand in the information technology arena, individuals in the computer industry have surpassed professions in the medical and legal fields to become the highest-averaging paid individuals in the nation. But while software developers and web architects smell green, doctors cry foul.
Ali’s sentiment is echoed throughout the medical community’s fresh graduates who feel economically and socially violated.
“Can you count the number of gray hairs on my head? Well can you?!” Bilal Shahid asks while nervously pointing to his head. Shahid, 43, is one of the latest batches of fresh MD’s to come out of the University of Texas’ Medical School. Shahid went on with his histrionics by plucking out a gray hair and explaining, “This is the byproduct of years and years of molding and refinement. Can you honestly say that this equates with a four year, two-cent Bachelor’s in Information Systems?”
“This sucks!” were the first words echoed by Shafaat Ali Khan upon his return to the country after spending 10 years in medical school overseas. “You know that story of Rip Van Winkle and how he fell asleep for a hundred years, only to wake up and find everything changed?” Khan asks. “Well that’s how I’m feeling right about now. By the way, what’s an HMO?”
What angers the medical community most is the low threshold the computer industry holds. A four-year degree in computer science demands a higher average starting salary than that of a medical specialization in dermatology. Furthermore, it has become commonplace to find computer professionals without any Bachelors degrees whatsoever.
Many aspiring medical students find themselves hanging up their stethoscopes and picking up keyboards.
Tahami Siddiqui was a former medical student at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine until he made the switch. Siddiqui was one semester away from his MD before joining the waves of MIS students.
“I remember thinking to myself: the hell with this!” Siddiqui said. “This ‘noble profession’ won’t get me married to a beautiful Pakistani as fast as coding in C++ will.”
Marriage is definitely another area where doctors feel they’re losing they’re reign. Upon hearing the word “doctor,” Muslim mothers would flock to the source. Nowadays that flock has turned into a sluggish stroll.
“I hate computer people,” says Nabil Chaudhry, an MD. “I was supposed to marry this girl named Fatima. When I graduated medical school, I found out she married a FOB version of Bill Gates. I hope that marriage crashes…haha get it?”
Chaudhry walked away laughing frantically.
At the turn of the century, this nation is witnessing a new rivalry brewing between two professions which are so different, yet somehow battle for the same territory. The entire medical field sits up in arms over this issue as their adversaries continuously take to the bank.
At a medical convention in Los Angeles, Dr. Ahmed raved on, “I got in this profession to help people. Now give me some recognition dammit! Show me the money…show me the money!!!”