Startups are powering tech, a dynamic and evolving industry that touches every part of our lives, from the medical treatments we undergo to the way we book a place to stay on vacation. This ever-evolving success story could not have happened without the amazingly talented people conceiving ideas and turning them into life-enhancing innovations.
Today, the biggest need of any startup is talent — creative, highly-skilled workers who can turn ideas into the next big technological revolution. To maintain America's innovative edge, we need a two-prong policy approach of boosting STEM education and training for Americans to fill the jobs of the future, while fixing our high-skilled immigration system so that businesses can recruit the best people for these jobs today without harming U.S. workers.
Right now, our education system is lagging behind. Today, there are more than 500,000 well-paying computing jobs currently unfilled in the U.S. By 2020, there will be one million more computing jobs nationally than there will be graduates to fill them, resulting in a $500 billion opportunity gap.
Additionally, only one out of four K-12 schools teach any computer science, even though nine out of ten parents say they want it taught in their children's schools. We must prioritize and support programs that ensure principles of computer science, computational thinking, and STEM skills are integrated into K-12 education.