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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

THE GLOBAL FIGHT FOR TOP TALENT

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Great piece by Geoff Colvin of Fortune Magazine. Hat tip to reader "Legal and Waiting for the link.

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  1. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Read your post and realized that it's time to modify my name.
  2. Greg Siskind's Avatar
    Congrats LNLW!
  3. USC's Avatar
    Yes, congratulations, LNLW.

    "Cisco CEO John Chambers, who is passionate on this subject, says, Anyone with a college degree should be welcome to come to our country, with appropriate security checks."

    I agree wholeheartedly. Congress should be listening to the Bill Gates, the John Chambers & the Andy Groves.

    "but we hardly have the best education system.......yet the world's richest country still has nowhere near the world's best education system."

    This is the only part of the article I disagree with. We do have some of the best universities in the World.....CalTech, Stanford, Yale, Princeton etc. If the author is talking about our primary education system, I would rank the UK as the best.

    Incidentally, I speak from personal experience having gone to primary/high school in London, New Delhi & New York. My ranking for these three would be the UK, followed by the US followed by India.
  4. WD's Avatar
    Legal Immigrants unable to get Driving Licences in TN and other states due to newer DL laws aimed at illegal immigrants.

    http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/showthread.php?t=15620
  5. 's Avatar
    LNLW,

    I know that we've had our differences but I can also imagine how good it must feel to be out of the limbo status.
    So, congratulations!!
  6. paskal's Avatar
    no longer waiting...

    hey great news!!!
    conratulations.. :-)
  7. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Thanks, guys! A huge source of anxiety is off my shoulders, so hopefully, it will let me be more productive.

    Did not mean to get the discussion off track. I think this guy is definitely on to something - I do believe that countries will be competing for talent in the near future, much like they competed for capital/investments in the recent years.
  8. Another voice's Avatar
    "Read your post and realized that it's time to modify my name."

    Good for you L&NLW I hope you still continue to contribute to the blog and stay with the cause.
  9. Sid's Avatar
    "LNLW,

    I know that we've had our differences but I can also imagine how good it must feel to be out of the limbo status.
    So, congratulations!!"

    I just realized that I had posted it without a name.
  10. legal-forever-waiting-forever's Avatar
    http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/12/04/navarrette/index.html

    Commentary: Fear of losing culture fuels immigration
    debate

    Story Highlights
    Opponents see Hispanic immigrants as weakening U.S. identity

    One town demanded all library books be in English, Navarrette says

    Hispanics the latest to find themselves at center of culture war

  11. Sid's Avatar
    Questions are raised about the quality of education in the US because of a few reasons -

    1> The syllabus for STEM courses in high schools in the US is not as advanced as that in India. On the positive side, American students are exposed to a lot of different non-STEM subjects that are not covered in high schools in India. Students in India have to pick a specialization area - science, arts or commerce during the junior and senior years. So, if you want to become an engineer, you'd have to pick science(physics, chemistry) + math or to become a doctor you've to pick science + biology. You can pick both math and biology as well if you want to keep your options open. Americans who want to get into STEM fields make up for it during the undergrad years.

    2> The other issue is that there is a huge difference in quality between the top 30-50 universities and the rest. That's true even in India.

    You have to understand that immigrants who come to grad school are among the best in their country and they come to study with Americans who range from average to the brilliant. So, obviously, that'll bias their perception about the quality of American students.

    The sample set for American students is huge and the immigrants who come in to study obviously represent a biased sample of very good students and that gives rise to the misconception that American students/schools are not that good.

    If ALL American students are compared to ALL Indian students and ALL European students, the results would probably be in favor of the US.
  12. legal-forever-waiting-forever's Avatar
    Sid,

    you right, few people understand this. the comparison is skewed..apples and oranges...
  13. mammoy2k's Avatar
    WD, I did schooling in India and the US (top 10 B School). As far as education upto high school is concerned, US education is nowhere near to Indian schooling. I agree with you that undergrad and grad education in the US is better than what I got in India.

    Mammoo
  14. 's Avatar
    >> I agree with you that undergrad and grad education in the US is better than what I got in India.

    Well, for grad education the US is the only game in town. From what I've seen Indian undergrads accumulate far more credit hours than US undergrads. Therefore I'm curious why you believe US undergrad education is better than in India. Is it because of the flexibility associated with choosing courses or something else entirely?
  15. USC's Avatar
    RE: High School/Undergrad education.

    It is not about quantity, it is about quality. The primary school system in India emphasizes rote learning/mugging. OTOH, the US system, at least in theory, attempts to teach kids to think for themselves. As regards, undergrad education look at the quality of labs and other research opportunities available to students. Also look at the quality of the faculty. Can you name even one Indian faculty member who is a Nobel laureate in any field? What percentage of Professor's in Indian universities come from foreign countries? Who has a higher percentage of foreign students? Both will be significantly lower than the US. IMHO, one can learn a lot from different cultures so it is important to have a high percentage of both. It is certainly not my intention to disparage the Indian system.
  16. Sid's Avatar
    "As far as education upto high school is concerned, US education is nowhere near to Indian schooling."

    I would say that's true only for STEM related courses. I think the US high school education prepares them for a wide variety of careers.

    Also, are you telling me that public schools in India are anywhere as good as an average public school in the US? Most of us went to private schools because of the higher quality of education and the low tuition rates.

    "From what I've seen Indian undergrads accumulate far more credit hours than US undergrads. Therefore I'm curious why you believe US undergrad education is better than in India. Is it because of the flexibility associated with choosing courses or something else entirely?"

    One reason is definitely flexibility. Using credit hours could be misleading. I went to an IIT and there the theory courses are 4 credits and the labs were 2 or 4 credits. In the US, they combine the lab and theory courses so the workload is more than what the number of credits indicate. I personally think that the IITs are great in terms of attracting the talent but the quality of education and overall coursework are not anywhere as good as top US undergrad schools.
  17. Sid's Avatar
    "Also look at the quality of the faculty. Can you name even one Indian faculty member who is a Nobel laureate in any field? What percentage of Professor's in Indian universities come from foreign countries?"

    USC, overall I agree with your assessment but the Nobel laureates or high flying researchers rarely teach and definitely do not teach undergrads. Even in the top US schools the undergrads are usually taught by lecturers who don't have PhD's and work part time.
  18. 's Avatar
    >> Using credit hours could be misleading.

    I should have said credits then. When I had my wife's undergrad degree evaluated for licensing purposes, the evaluation came back with twice as many professional credits as the equivalent US undergrad degree, but next to none general education credits. Most of this of course was because general education is completed in India during the high school years. So prima facie it looks to me as if US undergrads spend a significant amount of time on what would be high school level coursework in India, and a much smaller amount of time on genuine college level coursework.

  19. USC's Avatar
    "I personally think that the IITs are great in terms of attracting the talent but the quality of education and overall coursework are not anywhere as good as top US undergrad schools."

    Actually, I think the IITs do an exceptional job and would consider them competitive with the top US schools. The other Indian Schools are nowhere in the game. The Indian universities also need to get rid of ragging which I find abhorrent.

    "USC, overall I agree with your assessment but the Nobel laureates or high flying researchers rarely teach and definitely do not teach undergrads. Even in the top US schools the undergrads are usually taught by lecturers who don't have PhD's and work part time."

    I don't know what the situation is today but when I was an undergraduate, the lectures were by the Professors themselves. The recitations and labs usually were by TAs who were Graduate students. Incidentally, you might have come across "Economics by Professor Samuelson of MIT" and "Electrical Engineering by Professor Carlson of RPI****" while at IIT. I took courses taught by both these Professors. Professor Samuelson was a Nobel Laureate at the time he was teaching undergrad courses.

    ****Now, you might have seen me rail against quotas that partly stems from the fact that MIT applied one against me and my Freshman year was at Rensselaer Poytechnic Institute (my Sophmore through Senior years were at MIT).
  20. Sid's Avatar
    "Actually, I think the IITs do an exceptional job and would consider them competitive with the top US schools. The other Indian Schools are nowhere in the game."

    I wish I could explain this without blowing my own trumpet but me and most of my fellow undergrads think that it's due to the quality of talent they attract and the selection process. The IIT-JEE (Joint Entrance Examination) is without doubt one of the toughest selection tests in the world and the great thing about it is that it hasn't been standardized like the GRE and GMAT. Due to the lousy pay and lack of adequate funding for research, it's really hard for them to attract the top professors. Much of the perception about the quality of IITs is based on it's graduates and not the actual quality of education.

    I would also rate the selection process for IIMs, Common Aptitude Test (CAT), very highly. In fact, because of the extremely low number of seats, getting into IIMs is much harder than getting into IITs.


    "The Indian universities also need to get rid of ragging which I find abhorrent."

    At least at the IITs things are a lot better now. Authorities were really starting to crack down on students who indulge in ragging during my time there. From what I've heard, it has come down to reasonable levels now.
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