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Michigan economy needs international students, study says
9:10 PM, October 16, 2013 |
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International students are crucial to Michigan’s
economic future and the state needs to do
more to help them stay here after graduation,
a study released Wednesday suggested.
The nonprofit groups Global Talent Retention
Initiative and Global Detroit said that by 2018,
Michigan will need to find candidates to fill
274,000 jobs in science, technology,
engineering and manufacturing (STEM) and
that targeting international students at state
colleges and universities will help meet that
goal.
Among the findings of the study:
Steve Tobocman
By John
Gallagher
Detroit Free
Press
Business Writer
■ Michigan’s international students are
choosing to stay in Michigan after graduation
at three times the rate of out-of-state students
(58% to 22%) and only slightly less than all
students (58% to 63%).
■ Michigan’s international students are three times as likely as
domestic students to major in STEM fields (59% to 18%).
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■ As many as 82% of international students obtain an advanced
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Steve Tobocman, a former state representative and director of Global
Detroit, said Michigan is “not doing enough to retain that talent after
they graduate.”
The report “documents the strength and importance of keeping the
international students in the Michigan workplace and helping our local
companies meet their labor needs,” he said.
Citing a report, Tobocman noted that one-third of Michigan’s high-tech
firms created between 1995 and 2005 were started by immigrants.
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International students contribute about $750 million annually to the
Michigan economy, he added.
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Many employers are said to resist employing a foreign-born student
for fear the candidate won’t fit the company’s culture. Groups like
Global Detroit and GTRI work to match up international candidates
with potential employers and to otherwise create a more welcoming
environment for foreign-born job candidates.
The study, titled “International Talent Retention in Michigan: A Pathway
to National Competitiveness,” can be found at www.migtri.org.
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