The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has issued a few new guides to attract STEM professionals to the United States. The publications give overviews of nonimmigrant and immigrant visa options for foreign nationals to work in STEM fields in the U.S.
These rules inform immigration practice procedures and should be followed by immigration officials deciding immigration petitions. On 24th January 2022, USCIS outlined the Department of Homeland Security’s declaration adding 22 new fields of study to the STEM optional training program through the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). Also, the new updated guidance and initiatives related to STEM professionals include:
USCIS Provides Extra Guidance to Foreign Nationals in STEM Fields
The first publication lists the most likely nonimmigrant visa categories available for STEM workers, including H1B, O1A, L-1, TN, and F-1 OPT. The magazine also gives a general overview of these categories and answers various frequently asked questions (FAQs).
The second follows a similar format yet focuses on immigrant visa options, including EB1, EB1, and EB3. Once more, an outline of every category is given, along with answers to a few FAQs.
The third publication covers, in less detail, both the nonimmigrant and immigrant visa options discussed in the initial two publications. It also includes a chart listing each of the aforementioned nonimmigrant categories. And one more chart with each of the related immigrant visa categories. The nonimmigrant chart demonstrates the necessary education, experience, or skills for each nonimmigrant category. Whether a job offer is required, and the duration of validity. The immigrant visa chart lists the required education, experience, or skills for each, and whether a job offer and/or labor certification is required.
While these rules and initiatives don’t rise to the level of major policy or regulatory changes. They demonstrate a willingness from USCIS to facilitate a STEM professional’s understanding of available temporary and permanent immigration options. As well as to work with efficient and predictable adjudication of relevant immigration applications by USCIS officers.
These charts should give a helpful guide to foreign nationals in STEM who are looking for career opportunities in the United States. It should be noted, however, that the charts don’t cover every possible avenue. That may be available to a foreign national STEM worker who would like to live and work in the U.S. Foreign nationals searching for ways to work in the U.S. are encouraged to plan a consultation with an experienced attorney.