New York Democratic Senator Charles Schumer unveiled new legislation on Tuesday that could make it easier for foreign students to remain in the US after graduation.
The Brains Act would allow tech start ups to hire more foreign born engineers. Some foreign students who graduate from American universities find it difficult to secure visas and are forced to return to their native countries.
Schumer’s new legislation, which he proposed alongside Senator Chris Coons of Delaware, would make 55,000 new green cards available to foreign science, technology, engineering, and math graduates who attended American universities.
“It makes no sense that America is educating the world’s smartest and most talented students and then, once they are at their full potential, kicks them out the door,” Schumer said in a statement.
“We should be encouraging every brilliant and well educated immigrant to stay here, build a business here, employ people here, and grow our economy. Fixing our broken green card system will help ensure that the next eBay, the next Google, the next Intel will be started in America, not in Shanghai.”
The legislation will also provide labor protections to ensure that foreign workers do not take high-paying high-skilled jobs that American workers are available to fill.
Jonathan Bowles, Executive Director of the Center for an Urban Future and co-author of “New Tech City,” said the Brains Act will provide a provide a critical boost to the economy.
“Right now, the single biggest obstacle to the continued growth of the tech sector in New York and the U.S. is the lack of skilled engineers and programmers. It will be years before our higher education system produces the pipeline of science and tech workers that's sufficient to meet the demand. Until then, the only answer is to make it easier for the top engineers, programmers and scientists from overseas to come and stay here. Senator Schumer's bill will make that possible.”