We are so happy to share Nousheen’s story on behalf of the Catholic Community Services of York Region (CCSYR) in Ontario. Nousheen moved from the United Arab Emirates in 2020 to Canada as an International Medical Graduate. We interviewed Nousheen at home with a Canon EOS 1DX MkIII camera and made b-roll footage with 70-200mm and 24mm L series lenses and a DJI Ronin Gimbal. Nousheen’s story is part of a series of success story videos we are producing for CCSYR to highlight the services they offer in the York Region in the Greater Toronto Area. You can learn more about CCSYR here.

You can learn more about our approach to CSR storytelling here.

Full video transcript:

I moved from UAE to Canada in December 2020 with my husband and three kids to ensure that my family is safe and has a place to call home. I’ve traveled to various countries and I’ve found that Canada is more inclusive and the education system is quite robust. My daughter is in high school. I want her to have an education which is world class and at the same time accepted across the world. I’ve already had a breadth of experience in obstetrics and gynecology for more than ten years. That exposure gave me enough experience to deal with a multicultural group of patients, different languages, different set of medical problems, expectations. As I’m seeing patients here, I’m able to bring in much more compassion and empathy.

The Canadian health care system takes around 500 to 800 international medical graduates every year into their system. I was able to get good scores in my exams and get through the matching process and able to impress the interviewers to select me for a residency program in family medicine at Western University. I’m currently in year one, so there are two years of training, and after that I’ll be writing my exam and then be into the system practicing independently.

So it was through Facebook that I saw a post by Catholic Community Services York Region or CCSYR which posted about the study group for IMGs for QE1 and NAC OSCE and that is when I first messaged Shamima and she was the one who got me into the group. They were the most helpful for me to understand the exam and pass them with flying colours. IMGs have to invest a lot of money to get through the system. They are quite expensive. CCSYR was able to subscribe with a group subscription for the question bank – it is the main study material for the exam.

Through the CCSYR I was able to study sitting at home. Being a new immigrant. I had to take care of my family, household chores and still study. I’m really grateful for the online group because it saved a lot of time for me to travel back and forth, save money on the transport and still be able to study and have access to all the resources needed for the exam. All the mentors are themselves IMGs who have gone through the entire process. I was getting information firsthand from people who’ve had experience in the system. I think that is very important because you need to know the system and hear from people who have already gone through it to be successful.

Going through this entire match process – is not a one man show. You need a lot of support both from family and friends. After I completed my exams and I was waiting for the CARMs process, I did mentor to the group to give back to this amazing community. And I was able to teach other international medical graduates about the topics, which was very important, and train them to prepare for the Q1 exam. And this also added as an asset to my CV because mentorship is highly regarded in this system.

My advice for all IMGs is to be very persistent and follow your dream. Do not get deviated. If you really have that passion, you will reach there. It’s just a matter of time and you will be there one day like me. It’s a dream which is achievable. IMGs need to really believe in themself. If you’re an IMG that needs support, contact CCSYR.