May 10 2013
USCIS Reports on Success of Entrepreneurs in Residence Initiative; Plans to Expand Program
USCIS commented this week on its Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIR) initiative, a federal program to bring together startup experts and USCIS immigration professionals to work together to more effectively utilize existing visa categories used by entrepreneurs. This innovative program, according to USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas, has seen “positive results based on the combined talent of private sector experts and our own internal experts …. [USCIS is] eager to expand this concept to other industries we serve.”
The EIR initiative was launched in February 2012. Approximately 500 individuals have participated in engagements across the U.S. and more than 400 USCIS employment-based immigration officers have been trained on startup businesses and the environment for early-stage innovation. One hundred officers have received additional training to handle entrepreneur and startup visa cases.
USCIS intends to expand the program in areas including performing arts, health care and information technology; these areas are crucial to expanded economic growth in the United States.