Today, the Obama Administration announced new steps to make it easier for highly skilled workers and talented researchers from other countries to contribute to our economy and ultimately become Americans. These measures are part of administrative reforms first announced in 2012, and reflect our commitment to attracting and retaining highly-skilled immigrants, continuing our economic recovery, and encouraging job creation.
At the same time, DHS is also proposing another new rule to make it easier for outstanding professors and researchers in other countries to demonstrate their eligibility for the EB-1 visa, a type of green card reserved for the world’s best and brightest. Just as great athletes and performers are already able to provide a range of evidence to support their petition for an EB-1, professors and researchers would be able to present diverse achievements such as groundbreaking patents or prestigious scientific grants.
You can watch the video featuring inaugural Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship below:
Inaugural members of the Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship (Nina Vaca, Hamdi Ulukaya, Rich Barton, Daphne Koller, and Steve Case) tell stories of how immigration makes America great, and why the time is now for common sense immigration reform.
These measures build on continuing Administration efforts to streamline existing systems, eliminate inefficiency, and increase transparency, such as by the launch of Entrepreneur Pathways, an online resource center that gives immigrant entrepreneurs an intuitive way to navigate opportunities to start and grow a business in the United States.
These actions promise to unleash more of the extraordinary contributions that immigrants have always made to America’s economy. By some estimates, immigration was responsible for one-third of the explosive growth in patenting in past decades, and these innovations contributed to increasing U.S. GDP by 2.4 percent. Immigrants represent 50 percent of PhD‘s working in math and computer science and 57 percent of PhD’s working in engineering, and one study found that 26 percent of all U.S.-based Nobel laureates over the past 50 years were foreign born.
Immigrants are also over-represented in the ranks of America’s entrepreneurs, as they are more than twice as likely as the native-born to start a business in the United States. Immigrants started one of every four small businesses and high-tech startups across America, and more than 40 percent of Fortune 500 companies—from GE and Ford to Google and Yahoo!—were founded by immigrants or the children of immigrants.
While today’s executive actions are an important step in the right direction, only Congress can offer permanent solutions to fix our broken immigration system and ensure that immigration pathways for foreign entrepreneurs and talented workers are clear and consistent, and better reflect today’s business realities.
Last June, the Senate passed a bipartisan immigration reform bill that would significantly grow our economy and shrink the deficit. It is imperative that the House of Representatives do its part to send a bill to the President’s desk, as the costs of inaction are considerable. Among the many other benefits of commonsense immigrant reform, we need legislation that will keep talented scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs here in America instead of compelling them to go back home and compete against us.
When President Obama and I met last month with the new Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship, these top entrepreneurs spoke passionately about the contributions of immigrants and the importance of immigration reform for growing our economy. This group of successful American business people who have committed to sharing their expertise to help develop the next generation of entrepreneurs at home and abroad agreed that we undermine our economic competitiveness when we make it harder, not easier, for talented immigrants to stay here and contribute to our economy.
America’s immigration system is broken. Too many employers game the system by hiring undocumented workers and there are 11 million people living in the shadows. Neither is good for the economy or the country.
Together we can build a fair, effective and common sense immigration system that lives up to our heritage as a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants.
The President’s plan builds a smart, effective immigration system that continues efforts to secure our borders and cracks down on employers who hire undocumented immigrants. It’s a plan that requires anyone who’s undocumented to get right with the law by paying their taxes and a penalty, learning English, and undergoing background checks before they can be eligible to earn citizenship.
White House White Board: Why Immigration Reform Is Good For Our Economy
Published on Jul 11, 2013
It’s clear commonsense immigration reform is good for the economy as a whole. Don’t take our word for it — study after study has shown that commonsense immigration reform will strengthen the economy, spur innovation, reduce the deficit and increase US trade and exports.
Creating an Immigration System for the 21st Century
White House Photo Of The Day – Monday May 5th, 2014
President Barack Obama meets with Anita Decker, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, and Personal Secretary Ferial Govashiri in the Oval Office, May 5, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama returns to the Oval Office after giving interviews in the Rose Garden of the White House, May 6, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)