Skip to Content

Press Releases

Congressman Nickel Introduces the Bipartisan Keep STEM Talent Act

Today, Congressman Wiley Nickel (NC-13), Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11), Congressman Mike Lawler (NY-17), and Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia (TX-29) introduced the bipartisan Keep STEM Talent Act. This bipartisan legislation would ensure that America retains its position as the world leader in science and technology by retaining talented workers in the STEM workforce.

Often, international students trained at U.S. institutions return to their home countries after their higher education is completed only to compete with the scientific community that trained them. The bipartisan Keep STEM Talent Act, which was introduced in the Senate by Senator Dick Durbin (IL) and Senator Mike Rounds (SD), would seek to address this by encouraging young students and scientists to remain in the United States and join the American scientific workforce.

Specifically, the bipartisan legislation would provide permanent resident status to international students who have completed advanced STEM degrees from U.S. educational institutions and are interested in continuing their research in the United States. The bill includes rigorous provisions to protect American workers and students, and would only apply to advanced degree holders from accredited universities who’ve been extended a legitimate job offer in their field subject to labor certification.

“I’m proud to partner with Congressman Foster, Congressman Lawler, and Congresswoman Garcia on this common sense, bipartisan legislation to help bolster scientific and technological research here in the United States,” said Congressman Wiley Nickel. “North Carolina is home to many prestigious colleges and universities, attracting international talent from all over the world. To remain at the forefront of cutting edge scientific and technological research and innovation, we need to ensure that international students that come to North Carolina for their higher education are able to stay in the United States once their degree is completed.”

"We must expand America's STEM workforce to compete in the global economy," said Congressman Bill Foster. "Our country gives international STEM students world-class educations, only to turn them away when they want to stay in the United States after graduation and contribute their skills to our economy. Allowing these graduates to stay would help put our country on the cutting edge of scientific research and technological development and create good-paying American jobs along the way. I'm proud to lead this bipartisan effort to build up our STEM workforce."

“I’m proud to join my colleagues in introducing the bipartisan Keep STEM Talent Act of 2023. Our colleges and universities are some of the best in the world, and every year, hundreds of thousands of international students come to our shores for a world-class education, only to take that knowledge and talent with them when they leave,”
said Congressman Mike Lawler. “The Keep STEM Talent Act will enable more international students who have completed advanced STEM degrees from U.S. institutions to continue working in the U.S. when they graduate. This will enable them to contribute to our economy and help America retain its position as the world leader in science and technology.”

Legislative Text of the Bipartisan Keep STEM Talent Act can be found HERE.