Science is collaborative and depends on the exchange of ideas and information that can only take place face-to-face. The United States’ position as a leader in science depends heavily on the ability of American scientists to travel abroad to collaborate with international colleagues and on future scientists to come to the United States to study at our world-class research institutions and to learn from some of the best scientists in the world. All too often, our immigration and visa policies force students who are trained in the United States to return home at the completion of their studies where they end up competing with the very country that trained them. To maintain our leadership in the world, the United States must enact changes to immigration policies that make it easier, not harder, for the best and the brightest from around the world to come to the U.S. to study and then stay when their studies are completed and allow the U.S. to remain a world leader in science.
In 2013, the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) published a report outlining four changes we believe need to be made to the immigration system to allow the United States to remain a world leader in science. In light of the focus on immigration in the recent Presidential election, even before the recently issued Executive Orders, the ASCB has updated and is now rereleasing its paper.