Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force [Updated July 23, 2008]   [open pdf - 203KB]

"The debate on the presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and the workforce has intensified as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001." "Concerns have been expressed about certain foreign students receiving education and training in sensitive areas. There has been increased discussion about the access of foreign scientists and engineers to research and development (R&D) related to chemical and biological weapons. Also, there is discussion of the added scrutiny of foreign students from countries that sponsor terrorism." "The increased presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and in the scientific workforce has been and continues to be of concern to some in the scientific community. Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs. In addition to the number of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs, a significant number of university faculty in the scientific disciplines are foreign, and foreign doctorates are employed in large numbers by industry. […]. Many in the scientific community maintain that in order to compete with countries that are rapidly expanding their scientific and technological capabilities, the country needs to bring to the United States those whose skills will benefit society and will enable us to compete in the new-technology based global economy. The academic community is concerned that the more stringent visa requirements for foreign students may have a continued impact on enrollments in colleges and universities."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, 97-746
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