Manufacturers need a skilled workforce to succeed in today’s global economy. Although we need machinists and welders, we also need to ensure that the innovators, those driving change and invention, come and stay in the US.
Many of the smartest people from around the world come to the US to be educated. That is why the NAM commends introduction of the “STEM Jobs Act of 2012” by thank Chairman Lamar Smith and we urge Congress to pass it. This bill will allow manufacturers access to talent without increasing the total number of visas. By creating two new employment-based visa categories for Masters and PhD graduates from qualified universities in STEM fields, the bill allows for a streamlined green card process. This is an important step towards reforming the employment-based visa system to retain talent and encourage innovation, so US manufacturing can remain a global leader. This positive step is recognized by both Democrats and Republicans as evidenced by bills authored by both Rep Lofgren and Senator Schumer that also increase employment based visas. The NAM has long worked for a bi-partisan solution to this problem and will continue to pursue broad reforms.
The NAM looks forward to working with the co-sponsors to promote this valuable legislation.