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U.S. Needs to Prioritize Recruiting, Retaining Top STEM Talent

The race for peak innovation and technological advancements globally is on, and America’s greatest competitors like China are on a fast track to advancing their STEM sectors and innovation. To remain competitive while protecting our national security, the U.S. needs to prioritize recruiting and retaining the top STEM talent.

By giving foreign-born individuals with advanced degrees in STEM greater opportunities to continue living, working and lending their talents within the United States – rather than sending them to our competitors – we could bolster our workforce, grow innovation, and increase our global competitiveness.

Unfortunately, current policies keep many foreign-born STEM professionals from remaining in and contributing to the U.S., even if they want to. By keeping STEM professionals here, we would also be securing U.S. innovation and keeping it within our borders, supporting our national security.

The America COMPETES Act, which passed in the House earlier this year, would help fix this by establishing a direct path to permanent residency for certain educated STEM students.

A similar, but narrower, version of the legislation passed the Senate. It’s now headed to Conference Committee to develop a bill that both Chambers agree on. It’s critical that these STEM provisions remain in the final bill and that it’s sent to the president’s desk, and I encourage Senator Collins, who was a co-sponsor of the Senate legislation, to ensure that is the case in order to keep the U.S. on top.


Linking STEM and national security in the same breath is hilarious. U.S. universities have been targeted by foreign nationals for years who take our best education just to return to their native countries and use it in their military, business, technology and science. And the U.S. has been allowing this for years. The FBI opens a new counter- intelligence investigation every ten hours against suspected Chinese agents, on average! We’re leaving like a sieve. It was so bad that a special unit at FBI was created a few years ago to combat CCP espionage in America. And amazingly enough, President Biden recently shut it down a short time ago.

Nobody should believe anything in D.C. says about STEM in conjunction with foreign students. Adversaries have been stealing our IP for years placing our national security in peril.

America is the world’s last remaining superpower (for the time being, at least.) We have enormously talented individuals and we DO NOT NEED to recruit foreigners. That’s ridiculous and dangerous.

      How shocking–a comment from the right-wing that is not grounded in reality!

      There are not enough US students in STEM programs–period. This is a fact that’s well known. There are lots of theories about why that is–feel free to dive in and do the research on your own. The US may have enormously talented individuals but we at the moment do not have enough students in STEM programs to fill the roles that are becoming vacant–particularly with the retirement of a large generation of Boomers.

      You can “rah, rah USA” all you want here and clearly that’s your thing but it does not address the problem at hand.

      • On the contrary, you lay out the case fairly-well. Why aren’t there sufficient U.S. students in STEM programs? Is it because foreigners routinely pay premium tuition rates resulting in huge financial benefits for the universities?
        Regardless, educating foreign students so many of them can take that education and put it to use against America is a threat to economic security and national security as years of evidence has proven.

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