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  • Writer's pictureGCC

Conversation Starter: International Students and Entrepreneurship (U.S. Edition)

“Startup businesses gain tremendously from the talent, drive, and perspective that international students bring”

This quote from GCC’s Kate Moore was included in a PIE News article from January 2024 titled USCIS Updates Policy Guidance for International Students” by Kim Martin.


At Global Career Center (GCC) our work connecting employability and education is often at the intersection of immigration and innovation and workforce development.


Particularly when supporting interns coming to the US or developing programs with US-based university partners for visiting international students, entrepreneurship as a pathway – and a passion, or vocation – can be top of mind. GCC works with a range of stakeholders within innovation ecosystems to spot trends, facilitate connections, provide support, and celebrate impact.


Our team is frequently reminded of articles and reports highlighting the impact of international students, including Stuart Anderson’s “International Students Who Started Billion-Dollar Companies”  from NAFSA’s International Educator in 2016.


Mr. Anderson is a frequent contributor to the conversation about impact and one of his more recent reports through the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP) titled “Immigrant Entrepreneurs and U.S. Billion-Dollar Companies” was published in July 2022.


Shorelight’s post “Successful Entrepreneurs Who Started as International Students” last updated in August 2023 expands upon the NFAP report to share innovator profiles. Author Oshita Narangoda includes examples of relevant university-based programs and an overview of US policy approaches.


Additional examples of programs and policy follow.


  • Brown University’s Master of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (PRIME) Program is a STEM Masters of Science (ScM) degree based in the School of Engineering.  

  • Policy approaches on a state level were highlighted in Helen Packer’s PIE News article “New York Plans Boost to International Student Start-Ups” from January 2024.

  • For community beyond the college campus DREAM Venture Labs provides support to immigrant and refugee entrepreneurs as they magnify impact.


Considering impact and innovation, which policies and programs would you highlight for international students and entrepreneurship?


We look forward to continuing the conversation and welcome discussion of collaboration to connect education and employability in this space.


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