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Acts Propose Greater Opportunities For Immigrant Graduates and Entrepreneurs

The need for higher-skilled graduates and entrepreneurs is currently immense, not just in the United States, but internationally. With the strict immigration policy the US has, however, corporations and academia have very little access to this talent and immigrants have even less access to potentially beneficial business and educational opportunities.The US currently caps the number of H-1B visas issued annually to 65,000. These visas are issued to those immigrants who are able to bring highly specialized knowledge, talent, and experience in various theoretical and practical fields. In order to gauge how small of a number 65,000 really is, it should be noted that in 2008, this quota was met the first day it was offered. Similarly, the quota of the 20,000 H-1B visas that are offered to foreign students graduating from master’s or doctorate programs annually, was also filled on the first day it was offered in 2008.Senators Jerry Moran, R-KS, and Mark Warner, D-VA have introduced the Startup Act in order to ensure the utmost efficiency in regard to higher-skilled graduates and entrepreneurs.

The Startup Act

The Startup Act would establish two new kinds of visas in order to attract new business investments and talent, encourage entrepreneurial development so as to bolster the economy, and to accelerate commercialization of university research conducted by graduates. The Startup Act proposes a visa to be issued to 75,000 current H-1B visa holders who have either raised $100,000 or registered a new business to surpass the three year time limit to work in the US. The second kind of visa would be issued to 50,000 foreign students who have attained a master’s or doctorate degree in science, engineering, math, or technology (STEM).

The STAR ACT

Senator John Cornyn, R-TX, has introduced a similar legislation in regard to the latter category of immigrants.STAR ACT - Securing the Talent America RequiresHis bill, the Securing the Talent America Requires for the 21st Century (STAR) Act proposes to issue 55,000 green cards to those foreign students who are enrolled in STEM programs on the graduate level. With this increase in allocation of green cards, he also proposes to eradicate the diversity lottery. Cornyn is troubled by the amount of foreign STEM graduates who are forced to return to their home country, talents and skills in tow, due to their H-1B visas expiring within six years. In order to ensure that the highly valuable STEM graduates and skilled entrepreneurs stay in the US in order to strengthen the economy, maintain a powerful position in the competing global market, and to encourage growth, the Startup Act and STAR Acts should be given serious thought by the Senate and House Leaders.Contact Oltarsh and Associates for more details if your personal situation is affected by either the Startup Act or the Star Act.
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