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Oct 21, 2019 2019-10 Accountancy Alumni Business Administration Faculty Finance Student

Dean Brown joins business leaders in calling for high skill immigration reform

Gies College of Business Dean Jeffrey R. Brown joined more than 60 business school deans, CEOs, and industry leaders from across the United States in urging the federal government to make major changes to the nation’s immigration policy. In their public letter addressed to several high-ranking officials within the federal government, the deans argue that current immigration restrictions limit talent mobility and deprive the US of much-needed talent in critical areas and business functions. “We do not believe the U.S. has the high-skill talent it needs, nor does it have the capacity to train enough people with those skills,” the letter reads. “Without a substantial change in our approach, this deficit of skills in key fields will hinder economic growth.”

Jeff Brown 2“It is in our national economic interest to reduce barriers to high-skill immigration to the US,” said Brown, the Josef and Margot Lakonishok Professor of Business and Dean. “When we send talent back to their home countries to compete with us rather than keeping them here, we lose.”

The letter advocates for changes including removing “per-country” visa caps, modernizing the visa processing system, and reforming the H-1B visa program. The signatories argue those changes will make it possible for “the most talented people to have a reasonable chance of gaining entry to the United States.” Dean Brown and his colleagues also argue creating a “heartland” visa would encourage immigration to regions of the country where these talented people could be best utilized.

“We are not endorsing any specific bill. We are making a statement of principles,” said Dean Brown. “Our statement is not a zero-sum game. We are arguing for overall more high-skill immigration, not simply changing the countries of origin. These talented minds are great for the US economy.”

To read the full letter, click here.