H1Bs Filling the Void?
In 2000, the U.S. Congress doubled
the number of H-1B visas to 195,000 and we imported 90,000 engineers that year.
There are presently 34,000 unemployed U.S. engineers. Proponents of the program
point to U.S. colleges only graduating 65,000 engineers in the same year, and that
50% of engineers leave the field within 10 years after graduation. Businesses, it
is argued, would move overseas if they could not import engineers to fill slots.
Opponents of the H-1B program blame the companies for using H1B subjects as a form
cheap, controllable indentured servants (H-1Bs are issued to corporate sponsors
- not the workers). They cite the notoriously poor public education system for not
preparing students for the rigors of college. Maybe the hopeless life of an engineer
as portrayed by Dilbert each day in the local comic strip is contributing to our
kids avoiding engineering?