Donald Trump wants international students to be able to stay in the U.S. post-graduation

In a series of tweets last week, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump advocated for increased opportunities for international students to stay in the U.S. after graduating from American colleges and universities, Inside Higher Ed reports.

Trump tweeted:

“When foreigners attend our great colleges and want to stay in the U.S., they should not be thrown out of our country” (first tweet)

“I want talented people to come into this country -- to work hard and to become citizens. Silicon Valley needs engineers, etc.” (second tweet)


The tweets were posted two days after Trump released his immigration policy proposal covering a wide range of topics including H-1B visa program, birthright citizenship, and undocumented workers; it also calls for a termination of the J-1 visa program (the Alliance previously reported).

In response to Trump’s tweets, Heather Stewart, counsel and director of immigration policy for NAFSA: Association of International Educators, noted that allowing more international students to remain in the U.S. post-graduation would benefit the students, as well as local communities and U.S. businesses. Stewart, quoted by Inside Higher Ed, emphasized that Trump's campaign has not provided additional information on how it would facilitate new post-graduation opportunities for international students:

“While Trump tweets good things about keeping talented international students in our country, his policy makes no mention of how he will attract and retain them…There are very few opportunities available for highly educated and talented immigrants to live and work here and become Americans once they have exhausted their opportunities as students. The facts show that over the past decade, the United States has lost 10 percent of its market share of foreign students, as other countries continue to adopt friendlier immigration laws. A true viable immigration plan, which meets the educational, economic and security needs of our nation, must not only fix our broken pipeline of talent, but also create a path to citizenship for those working here and contributing to our communities.”

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