Michigan goes after high-tech immigrants with Global Talent Retention Initiative

Michigan is making a concerted effort to attract and retain its skilled workforce, specifically with  well-educated immigrants, through the Global Talent Retention Initiative of Southeast Michigan.

The New Economy Initiative-funded effort is working to attract and keep its graduates (both home-grown and from out-of-state/country) in the science, technology, engineering and math fields. The idea is to accelerate the growth of Metro Detroit's new economy by deepening our talent pool.

"There are a lot of jobs open but they're at the higher level tech and engineering skills," says Athena Trentin, director of the Global Talent Retention Initiative of Southeast Michigan. "We just don't have enough domestic students graduating with skills so we need to bring in more international talent."

The initiative will host a number of joint career conferences hosted by the three University Research Corridor institutions (University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Wayne State University) and four partner institutions (Eastern Michigan University, Lawrence Technological University, Oakland University, and University of Michigan - Dearborn). These conferences aim to entice foreign-born college students to stay in Michigan to live and work by helping them connect with immigration-friendly employers and prepare them for the cultural nuances unique to their job search in Michigan.

The Global Talent Retention Initiative of Southeast Michigan will also provide employer education seminars to help local businesses become more familiar with employing immigrants. Those seminars include lesson on the immigration process, taxation, and cultural concerns.

Source: Athena Trentin, director of the Global Talent Retention Initiative of Southeast Michigan
Writer: Jon Zemke

Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.
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