A broad coalition of U.S. employers, higher education, and trade and professional organizations today issued a letter to all Members of the U.S. House of Representatives commending House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) for his work to draft a STEM bill. The letter also calls on Members of Congress to pass a bipartisan STEM bill to establish a green card program for outstanding foreign graduates of American universities with advanced degrees in STEM fields. Chairman Smith released the statement below, agreeing with the coalition's goals.
Chairman Smith: "Many of the world's top scientists and engineers come to the U.S. to obtain advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math. We could boost economic growth and spur job creation by allowing American employers to retain some of the best and brightest foreign graduates of U.S. universities who have advanced degrees.
"In a global economy, we cannot afford to train these foreign graduates in the U.S. and then send them back home to work for our competitors. For America to be the world's economic leader, we must have access to the world's best talent. I hope to introduce a bill that will allow these outstanding foreign graduates to remain in the U.S. This will help us create jobs for unemployed Americans, increase our competitiveness, and maintain America as the world leader in innovation."
Foreign students receive nearly four out of every 10 master's degrees awarded in STEM fields and about the same percentage of all doctorates. Although these foreign graduates are in great demand by American employers, the U.S. currently selects only 5% of immigrants based on the skills and education they bring to the U.S.
To read the coalition's full letter, visit http://judiciary.house.gov/news/pdfs/STEM.pdf
Below is a list of organizations and employers that signed the letter.
American Council of Engineering Companies
American Council on International Personnel
American Society for Engineering Education
College and University Professional Association for Human Resources
Compete America Coalition
Consumer Electronics Association
HR Policy Association
IEEE -- USA
Information Technology Industry Council
National Association of Manufacturers
National Foreign Trade Council
Partnership for a New American Economy
Precision Machined Products Association
Semiconductor Industry Association
Society for Human Resource Management
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Black Hills Corporation
Boston Scientific Corporation
Brooks Courier Service, Inc.
Computer Task Group, Inc.
Concord Servicing Corporation
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold
Ingersoll Rand Company
Interactive Intelligence, Inc.
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Maxim Integrated Products
Mitsubishi International Corporation
Motorola Solutions, Inc.
Olmstead Medical Center
Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc.
Principal Financial Group, Inc.
Research In Motion
Texas Instruments Incorporated
The MathWorks, Inc.
State and Local Associations
Adirondack Regional Chamber of Commerce
Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce
Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce
Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Arizona Technology Council
Associated Industries of Massachusetts
Austin Chamber of Commerce
Baltimore Washington Corridor Chamber
Buffalo Niagara Partnership
Business & Industry Association of New Hampshire
Cabarrus Regional Chamber of Commerce
Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce
Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
Connecticut Technology Council
Dakota County Regional Chamber of Commerce
Delaware State Chamber of Commerce
Detroit Regional Chamber
Fargo Moorhead West Fargo Chamber of Commerce
Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition
Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce
Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce
Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce
Greater Louisville Inc.
Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce
Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce
Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce
Illinois Chamber of Commerce
Illinois Technology Association
Kansas Chamber of Commerce
Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce
Lima Allen County Chamber of Commerce
Manhattan Chamber of Commerce
Maryland Chamber of Commerce
Maryland Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Minnesota Chamber of Commerce
New Jersey Technology Council
New York Technology Council
North Carolina Chamber
North Carolina Technology Association
North Country (New York) Chamber of Commerce
North Dakota Chamber of Commerce
Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry
Portland (Maine) Regional Chamber of Commerce
Prince William (Virginia) Chamber of Commerce
Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce
Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce
Rockford Chamber of Commerce
Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce
Silicon Valley Leadership Group
Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
South Shore Chamber of Commerce
Tampa Bay Technology Forum
Technology Leadership PAC- California
Tempe Chamber of Commerce
The Chamber of Reno, Sparks, and Northern Nevada
The Committee of 100 (Delaware)
Tucson Metro Chamber of Commerce
Valley Industry & Commerce Association
Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber