State Program Connects Skilled Immigrants with STEM Jobs in Michigan

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The State of Michigan is working to provide skilled immigrants with job search training through a new initiative focused on connecting employers with immigrants in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

“We welcome professionals from all over the world, making Michigan the best place for them to restart their careers,” says Gov. Rick Snyder. “Diversifying our workforce is just as important as diversifying our economy. Michigan was built on immigrant innovators and entrepreneurs who created some of the world’s most productive companies. As we make our economic comeback, integration of immigrant talent into our workforce gives our employers the competitive advantage they need to be successful in the global economy.”

Snyder says the Michigan International Talent Solutions program supports skilled and permanently work-authorized immigrants’ return to their professional careers in Michigan. The Michigan Office for New Americans has partnered with the nonprofit Upwardly Global to train international job seekers.

Immigrant professionals will receive help with resume development, job applications, and networking and marketing skills, along with help with interview skills and salary negotiation.

Snyder says employers will save money through the program because there is no placement fee and the program facilitates the hiring process in select professions, validating skills and employability levels. He says on average, there is a 90 percent retention rate after one year of employment, which reduces turnover and related costs associated with rehiring.

“The Michigan International Talent Solutions is simply designed to make the connection by supporting immigrants in their professional job search and the employers who hire them,” says Bing Goei, director of the Michigan Office for New Americans. “We all have a stake in developing the full potential of every resident who is ready and eager to work.”

Goei says skilled immigrants with professional credentials represent 6 percent of Michigan residents.

Applicants must possess a green card or have other permanent work authorization status, have at least a bachelor’s degree from a foreign university, have a minimum of two years professional work experience outside of the United States, and be proficient in English.

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