PRESIDENT TRUMP - Impact on Indian Students
Quite a few of my students – CAT, GRE as well as those hopeful of taking up jobs have asked me about my views on Trump’s victory and the impact of this on their goals. I am penning what I had told my students a couple of months back during a class discussion, on then hypothetical scenario of Trump becoming the President.
A study of Trump’s policy shows his focus on stopping “exporting” jobs to other countries, and keeping the jobs within the US. This would
• Impact the job openings in large IT recruiters like TCS, which do a lot of out-sourcing jobs – thus impacting placements in India, for it is companies like TCS which fuel the placements in most of the colleges.
• High end jobs, like that offered by Google India, etc., would however not be impacted, as these high-end jobs chase talent rather than vice versa.
• H1 visa would become tighter for those working in low end IT companies to get on-site (US) exposure. This however, once again, would not be a case for high-end openings, as Trump has expressed his aim of attracting brains to the US.
Trump’s policy of retaining the jobs within US would help create more openings in the US job market. This would assist those
• Indians who go to the US through the F1 visa (which is the student visa) and then look for a job there.
• Trump is also committed to fast-track the route to permanent residence for highly qualified foreign workers to keep jobs and brains in the US. Making F1 to H1 route easier is a part of this.
• Small businesses would benefit there, for Trump is also looking at tax concessions to promote employment there, thus increasing the chances of part time jobs while Indian students do their MS there.
Actions against illegal immigrants would not impact Indians much (especially students), for Indian (both students and professionals) take the legal route to go to the US – F1 or H1. With the deportation of illegal migrants, low end jobs would open more, opening part time job opportunities for Indian students there.
With greater investment in infrastructure promised by Trump, openings would increase for Civil, Mechanical and Electrical engineers in the US. This would benefit both F1 and H1 seekers. The latter because, unlike in IT, this comes under limited-available talent.
Let’s not forget, Trump has also stated his agenda to promote more students coming to US for higher education. “Attracting brains” – his words! Thus, F1 visa process would be facilitated.
With China being one of the focus countries to fight against (US has a huge trade deficit against China, and Trump has been critical of China’s policies – both in currency market and in the trade), India would indirectly benefit, for opportunities would shift from Chinese to Indians.
What would be the impact on Indian market? As said above, shift of focus out of China would benefit the Indian market, though, as again stated above, low end IT openings would be impacted. This shift, along with the benefits of GST adoption in India, and the demonetization – which though painful in the short run- would result in banks getting monetized and thus low interest funds channelized into the infrastructure would mean better openings in India. These impacts would however take at least one year to fructify.
So, to conclude
looking for entry level IT jobs in 2017: Negative
looking for non-IT jobs in 2017: Positive
looking for GRE route to US 2017: Double Positive
looking for MBA in India: Positive
However, two additional points must be remembered: Trump is a business man – and a successful business man with interests across the globe. His statements made during elections might just be empty words. He is a pragmatic person, and has not hesitated – even during the electioneering – to change his stance.Therefore, I personally believe, the expectations of the US changing its course dramatically would not materialize.
However, his followers are the passionate lot, and quite a few of them are bigots. The instances of hate crime – racial, religious, and country specific would go up in the short run. However, when the initial excitement (of theirs) settle, US is expected to continue showing the world the power of being an open economy.
These however are uncertain times. Good impact or negative – your business – being students is to equip yourselves well. Set your goals, and then fight hard for them. Be ready to take benefit of the good times, and also be ready, in case bad times require you to fight.
As, one of my professors in the college used to say – be ready to fight a tiger – in case the opponent then is a pussy cat – you are still ready.