Should Foreign STEM Graduates Get Green Cards?
As the U.S. economy staggers out of recession, many see the growth of the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields, known collectively as STEM, to be crucial in keeping the United States competitive on the global stage. In addition to facilitating the study of these fields among American youths, some STEM proponents argue that immigrants who come to the United States to learn about the sciences should be encouraged to stay here once they have graduated. They fear that otherwise, foreign STEM grads will take their skills and education to their home countries, costing America the opportunity for job-creating innovation. The STAPLE Act, which would grant immigrants who earn Ph.D.’s in STEM fields permanent residency and exempt them from immigrant quota limitations, is one initiative being proposed to keep foreign STEM graduates on U.S. soil in the hopes that they will create successful companies and more jobs for Americans. Opponents say this and similar measures would have the opposite effect, taking jobs away from Americans and supressing wages in the fields. Should foreign STEM graduates get green cards? Here is the Debate Club’s take: