Dec 7 2009

Immigration policy for recent grad school grads

I made reference to the issue of immigration policy in a post last week (see “Want more jobs? Support Entrepreneurship”). In that post I referenced a WSJ OpEd piece that my partner Brad Feld wrote last week with Paul Kedrosky about the Start-up Visa Movement (the idea that we should make it easier for foreign born entrepreneurs who are starting their companies and who have obtained financing to stay in the United States to build their businesses). In my post I went on to say:

But let’s take this idea further. For example, how could it possibly make sense to deport a recent graduate school graduate (someone with the kind of technical degree that we so badly need here in the US and who received significant federal and state subsidies to study here)? We should be doing everything we can to keep smart, educated, motivated immigrants here – we want them contributing to our society and to our economy.

Susan Hockfield has a great OpEd piece in this morning’s Journal on this exact topic that is well wroth reading. Here’s my favorite quote from the article to give you the flavor but please click through and read the whole thing.

Our immigration laws specifically require that students return to their home countries after earning their degrees and then apply for a visa if they want to return and work in the U.S. It would be hard to invent a policy more counterproductive to our national interest.