There are so many reasons US workers aren't hired I wouldn't even try and count them all here, I'll say on background this is an entirely different era than when I was in high school and everyone seemed to be worried that the Soviets would win the space race, but we have so much "basic technology" in place now that companies aren't really "lookinig for technology heroes", they just want lower costs. One of the bigger problems US students do have is gullibility, they listen to the promotions of all these vested interests and actually believe them. Anyone who gets into some silly robotics competition and believes that writing a program to make some dumb robot run around a ring and beat up other robots is going to help him find a job deserves what his stupidity has brought to his pursuit of a career.
I guess I could mention that one reason I didn't see enumerated here is student loan debt. If you believe what companies are telling you about companies being unable to hire people with advanced degrees, it means you'll probably stay in school and get one or two. Meantime students in many other countries are getting what education they can with government aid and their tuition is sometimes even totally comped. Does this mean I'm in favor of more government aid or lower student loan interest rates? Hah! US companies will ALWAYS find an excuse to hire at the lowest rate they can find, and someone who carries debt is an unattractive candidate because he'll ultinately be seeking to be compensated at a rate high enough to pay it off, and that alone will render him an unattractive hire.
Except for a very few of the best-capitalized outfits they aren't really even looking for engineers or even technicians, they just want to hire some glorified "technically-trained clerks" who will perform some duties without making too many mistakes, but who will be around to "take the fall" in a culture where managers actually NEED to have technical employees around in a "management of blame" corporate culture. In an environment like that, for a given manager to succeed he needs to have workers around who "didn't do the job they were assigned the way they were supposed to" (translation: a hanful of engineers couldn't write and integrate a few million lines of new software in a couple of weeks) so that despite repeated project failures the manager can still acquit his efforts and move up to mahogany row and make millions in salary, stock grants and bonuses. Moral: if you want to succeed in business, get an MBA and learn to lie and blame others a lot, but DON'T get into engineering!
The H1-B system is flawed because it is based on the hiring firms. The situation distorts the market, allowing firms to bring in workers effectively from a separate pool that will accept lower wages and that have less power to bargain with their employer because they are dependent on the employer for their visa.
The system needs to be replaced with one that grants visas based on talent and education. This will add to the talent pool in the US, but the economy is not a zero sum game. More talent here means more companies can start, stay and grow here. Placing foreign workers into the same market as US citizens and disentangling the visas from the hiring firms is a critical step. It's obvious why the big companies and to perpetuate and expand this distortion, though, to the detriment of US citizens.
This is done to simply to keep the costs down by depressing all wages. All employers claim (to varying degrees of truthfullness) that they pay H1B visa holders and US citizents the same amount of money for the same job. Even when this is true, this is used as an excuse to pay everybody less. By doing this, the employers avoid the accusation of using H1B holders as cheap labor, and simultaneously get to pay other employees at the same level as H1B employees. What a way to double dip!
Without any H1B visas, the wages will rise in the US, and eventually a balance of supply and demand will be established. More STEM graduates will be hired, but everybody (recent graduate or not) will make more money. And most importantly, there will be no shortage of well trained employees. The companies respond that without the H1B visas, they will have move some jobs overseas. These is partial truth in that, but they have been doing that anyway even with abondant number H1B employees. Some companies have learned that the cheap labor overseas is often worth only what you paid for it. So the smart ones start hiring here even if the wages are higher.
"Intel and Apple didn't just pop up out of the ground. A lot of their ability to prosper is because the people of the US put a tremendous amount of resources into developing our infrastructure and research facilities."
This sounds reminiscent of the President's "You didn't build that" remark. However, how much of this infrastructure would have been built without the hundreds of billions of dollars the "people of the US" collect annually from corporations like these (and their shareholders)?
"Intel and Apple didn't just pop up out of the ground. A lot of their ability to prosper is because the people of the US put a tremendous amount of resources into developing our infrastructure and research facilities"
Ok then keep your products only in US and dont export it to take money from rest of the world. The rest of the world will find another way. Just as China replaced Google' with Baidu Other companies can be replaced.
There would be no need for visas then, All people will have jobs in their own country then. Wouldn't that be cool. Oh BTW let us know how many jobs you sustained after doing this.
Carolyn Mathas : Why Aren't Our STEM Graduates Hired yet? Don't the world owes them a living? Shouldnt we protect the jobs and take all the wealth from rest of the world with the products we make??
Carolyn, When you wake up, Tell Johnny and Janie to work hard, and be better, faster and more productive than the rest, to make a living.
There will always be obvious disruptions caused by lower-cost goods or labor entering a market. What is more difficult to identify however are the overall benefits to an economy as a whole accruing from the associated cost savings to companies and consumers. Focusing only on the former and ignoring the latter is bad economics.
I live in Los Angeles, there are signs everywhere in Spanish for immigration lawyers for the illegal aliens. If immigration lawyers were costly none of these Spanish speaking illegals could afford them. There was what 5 billable hours on your applications?
A country isn't a giant job fair. Intel and Apple didn't just pop up out of the ground. A lot of their ability to prosper is because the people of the US put a tremendous amount of resources into developing our infrastructure and research facilities. The management of corporations used to recognize they had a responsibility to the communities that helped them grow. Now they want to goose the stock up so they can cash their options out and who cares what happens after they are gone.