US may be losing too much foreign STEM talent, says CEO of JPMorgan Chase

Dive Brief:

  • Too many foreign students are leaving the U.S. following graduation from colleges and universities here, which means companies are missing out on a huge source of talent, Jamie Dimon, CEO for JPMorgan Chase & Co. told shareholders. 
  • The number of students who return to their countries of origin after graduating is around 40% (300,000 students) every year, Bloomberg report. Many of these students represent lost STEM talent. 
  • Dimon urges those on the Trump business forum to overhaul taxes, boost infrastructure investments, and take another look at the recent crackdown on the H-1B visa program that puts more pressure on companies that use the program.

Dive Insight:

Updates to the H-1B visa program create certain challenges for employers. The U.S. is in the midst of serious workforce skill shortages, particularly in STEM careers, but many companies don't have the knowledge or the internal systems available to maintain such programs.

The potential update to the visa program makes it even harder. The talent "brain drain" is a real problem, and may become worse if U.S. educated, foreign-born students are sent back to their countries instead of given the chance to innovate at U.S. companies. 

Leaders of the tech industry, like Dimon, continue to demand H-1B program reform from an administration that has come out strongly against the program. Jeff Sessions, U.S. attorney general, has said that the H-1B visa has a similar effect to outsourcing. He may push harder to raise wages for visa holders, making them less desirable to outsourcing companies. It would be one of many recent legal setbacks for the program.

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Filed Under: Recruiting