One of the very interesting questions I read was this:
While I can't speak to being a foreigner at a US university, I do have non-citizen friends who were/are in PhD programs in the US and I was always surprised at the troubles they were having with their visas. I was SHOCKED that some of them were afraid to fly home for fear of not being able to return. These situations only got worse after 9/11.
Would it make sense for more overseas students who receive PhDs at American universities to stay in the country and contribute to its research base and its wealth? What immigration reforms would you support?
Obama: I believe that we must enact comprehensive immigration reform to restore our economic strength, relieve local governments of unfair burdens stemming from an inefficient federal immigration system, ensure that our country and borders remain secure and allow a path to citizenship for the 12 million undocumented immigrants who are willing to pay a fine, pay taxes, and learn English. A critical part of comprehensive immigration reform is turning back misguided policies that since 9/11 have turned away the world's best and brightest from America. As president, I will improve our legal permanent resident visa programmes and temporary programmes to attract some of the world's most talented people to America.
One might assume that I am talking about countries like Iran or North Korea but these were students from Japan and all over Europe! Ooo...French Biology PhD student-don't come to the US with your Freedom Fries! (which oddly enough were actually invented in Belgium who confused the American troops by speaking French!)
I, for one, would support policies that would allow access to our educational facilities from other countries. Who wouldn't want to welcome in the next Einstein or Fermi (Fermi also had a particle accelerator lab near my childhood house named after him!)into the US?
Obama - you had me at enact comprehensive immigration reform to restore our economic strength...