STEM Green Card V. Green Card Lottery
Still, a Republican sponsored STEM Jobs Act, HR 6429, failed to pass the House on Thursday, September 20, 2012 with a two third majority. It was sponsored by Lamar Smith (R-TX), who otherwise generally favors bills that restrict immigration. It was rejected 257-158 mainly on party lines that would have provided 55,000 green cards to foreign students graduating in STEM fields. First dibs would have gone to foreign students with doctorates in STEM fields from a US university, and the remaining would have gone to foreign students who have graduated with masters degrees. These students would still need an employer to sponsor them, and they would need to agree to work for 5 years for that employer. The employer would also need to obtain a labor certification to demonstrate that there are insufficient American workers available for the job.
This post originally appeared on The Insightful Immigration Blog on September 21, 2012.
Cyrus D.Mehta, a graduate of Cambridge University and Columbia Law School, is the Managing Member of Cyrus D. Mehta & Associates, PLLC in New York City. He is the current Chair of AILA's Ethics Committee and former Chair of AILA's Pro Bono Committee. He is also the former Chair of the Board of Trustees of the American Immigration Council (2004-06) and Chair of the Committee on Immigration and Nationality Law (2000-03) of the New York City Bar Association. He is a frequent speaker and writer on various immigration-related issues, including on administrative remedies and ethics, and is also an adjunct associate professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School, where he teaches a course entitled "Immigration and Work." Mr. Mehta received the AILA 2011 Michael Maggio Memorial Award for his outstanding efforts in providing pro bono representation in the immigration field.