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Old 04-17-2016, 09:21 PM
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conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future conchshell has a brilliant future
Default An open letter to green card aspirants

I opened the visa bulletin page with great hope and anxiety; with prior experience I knew where exactly to look for the section that mentioned priority date for employment based category 2 for India. After all, I was checking this page at least a dozen times per week from past several years. The result was no different, and the priority date hadn’t moved an inch. It felt as if I will be in the bondage of H1B shackles for rest of my life. This was way back in 2007. Then one day, the priority date became current, life moved on just like an online video that starts running after buffering the downloaded content for a prolonged period. I received my green card in 2008, and eventually my US citizenship in 2015.

Fast forward in 2016, I am opening yet another page on the internet. I am again filled with same hope and anxiety. Almost on a daily basis, I visit www.helpingo.com – a travel companion search engine I have built with my teen age son, to check if it’s running fine. Each time I see this portal, I vow that I will solve travel companion search problem in the best possible manner ever – period. At this moment, the business feels like a stalled online video that’s buffering the content, and I know that this will run too. Only thing is – this time around I do not have the feeling of helplessness – as the success or failure of this endeavor depends on my dedication to the cause - and not on the visa numbers available to my country of origin.

Life is strange. It takes you through the roller coaster of emotions where one day you feel you are in complete control, and the other day you feel like a toy in the hands of destiny. No matter what, never lose hope. Paramhansa Yoganadna once said – “Thoughts are like a bullock cart that carry a man into the darkness of a mountain tunnel; just turn it backwards and you will be carried back to the light again”. I just recently checked the current visa bulletin and was astonished to see that priority date for EB3 category has moved only by a few months. A large number of brilliant and talented individuals who will one day build a business and contribute to United States economy, are still stuck under the unavailability of visa numbers for their country of origin.

So what can we do? I am among those few lucky individuals who had their application filed under EB2 category and had to wait only 4 years. Yet those four years felt like ages. What about the agony of smart individuals waiting in EB3 category with despair? I have my complete support for your cause and I strongly feel that golden gates must not close after my entry; rather they should become flood gate for international talent to enter the United States of America. I felt I should write my story and encourage you to not lose hope.

Soon after receiving my green card, I moved on from an engineering job to a product management position in the technology company I used to work for. The solid engineering experience earned during my H1B days helped me in evangelizing the products and services I was assigned to. On the personal front; in life’s own bizarre way I was fortunate to discover a problem when an elderly relative visited us from India, and we could not locate a travel companion to help her during her air travel. This problem led to a deep thinking on how travel companion search problem should be solved. This way my 10 years of engineering experience, and what I learned in my 5 years of product management tenure, morphed into an innovative travel companion search engine, what we today call HelpingO (Helping Others).

Just recently, my teen age son forced me to take him on a geek tour of Bay area. We had a good time together taking selfies in front of known large technology corporations and their head quarter signage. As part of this tour, we visited Computer History Museum in San Jose. A feeling of nostalgia took over me as I could connect and relate to a galaxy of entrepreneurs, their hard work, and their dreams. Although the museum only exhibits successful entrepreneurs from the past, I could clearly feel thousands and thousands of moderately successful or even failed entrepreneurs lurking out from the exhibits. No one talks about their contribution; yet I felt that they had their mark on the history of technology. This galaxy of entrepreneurs (successful or failed alike) is filled with people who immigrated to United States from rest of the world. As a budding entrepreneur I felt at home, at my righteous place. Now I more strongly feel that no rule or law should stop future entrepreneurs from entering the United States of America.

Also, for the first time in my professional life I felt I am in love with what I do. Steve Jobs in his famous Stanford speech urged students to never settle until they find out what they love. On the contrary, I discovered my love for what I do after spending a long time in the technology industry. However, I agree with Steve Jobs on rest of his speech – now it’s getting better as years are rolling on. I entered US on H1B in 2001 and received my green card in 2008. I used to refer this time as lost octave. But now I feel that helping.com would not be a reality had I not spent that time learning the intricacies of software development under the shackles of H1B, as I was too keen to become a manager too soon. “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

Anyway, the purpose of this letter is not to tell you my entrepreneurial stint. I may become successful in future and shine in the gallery of Computer History Museum, or may end up lurking out unnoticed; watching over the dreams of visiting generations of entrepreneurs – but I will always have a place in the galaxy. I want to fill you with a feeling of hope that one day flood gates will open, you will get your green card, your life will move on just like mine has moved since getting my green card. I sincerely hope that you will personally get inconvenienced by a problem that you will feel forced to solve, and ultimately join the hallways of Computer History Museum as a shining star or as an unnoticed one lurking out silently. No matter what happens; do not leave hope.

President Thomas Jefferson said that “all men are created equal and they have right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness”. On the same tune, all entrepreneurs have right to pursue their dreams; no matter in which country they want to. They solve problems, create jobs, and make this planet Earth a better place to live. They should be allowed to immigrate like birds emigrate from one country to another without realizing the geo-political boundaries created by immigration departments.

To conclude this letter, may be when I am done with my entrepreneurial stint with helping.com, and if I ever become a wise and experienced person, I will pen my wonderful experience as an immigrant to the United States of America and possibly make a movie - An immigrant’s life (probably as comic as we remember from A Bug’s Life).

Signing out for now – do not lose heart or hope. I am sure that one day our law makers will realize why we need to remove artificial boundaries and let skilled people like H1B freely enter the United States of America.

--conchshell
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 04-18-2016, 10:44 AM
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suresh.telu is on a distinguished road
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Nice Sales pitch.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 04-18-2016, 04:30 PM
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The reason for the suffering because of backlogs is our collective inherited karma. When I say Karma I don't mean to say it in good or bad sense. Karma is just the path we came in more than us it is collective path our forefathers took. Ancient Indians were bound by Dharma and Karma. They never bothered to explore other continents. They did not even explore China that much. Everybody was content in their village. Most of the time was spent in Art and Architecture. We were late to catch up on Industrialization. Also we were always in the slave mindset for centuries under the Moghul rule and then for about couple of centuries under British, French and other Europeans. Having said that we got 2 good things from the British rule the English and the Indian Railways. That English has helped us to compete with people from other countries like china, Russia etc.

So we inherited some good and a lot of bad. If India would have been 28 countries then we would not have felt the impact of 7% per country quota that much. We can whine about it forever but nothing is in our hands. The least we could do is enable the next generation and a very good life in US. As far as the applicants in backlog no philosophy will help.
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 04-18-2016, 08:43 PM
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dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute dipdowndust has a reputation beyond repute
Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaca View Post
The reason for the suffering because of backlogs is our collective inherited karma. When I say Karma I don't mean to say it in good or bad sense. Karma is just the path we came in more than us it is collective path our forefathers took. Ancient Indians were bound by Dharma and Karma. They never bothered to explore other continents. They did not even explore China that much. Everybody was content in their village. Most of the time was spent in Art and Architecture. We were late to catch up on Industrialization. Also we were always in the slave mindset for centuries under the Moghul rule and then for about couple of centuries under British, French and other Europeans. Having said that we got 2 good things from the British rule the English and the Indian Railways. That English has helped us to compete with people from other countries like china, Russia etc.

So we inherited some good and a lot of bad. If India would have been 28 countries then we would not have felt the impact of 7% per country quota that much. We can whine about it forever but nothing is in our hands. The least we could do is enable the next generation and a very good life in US. As far as the applicants in backlog no philosophy will help.
Future generation of high skilled indian immigrants should find their future in India and not here in USA. USA will only do something about immigration if they really need immigrants, otherwise they are not going to do anything. Immigration policies have to work for USA and they know that currently no changes are required. Countries like Australia, Canada had relaxed immigration policies as they needed population. Once they will see that they have enough immigrants, they will start becoming unfavorable as well. Currently future generation is in trouble and that is only going to grow. I personally know guys who came here in 2007/2008 and their EB2 p-dates are somewhere in 2012, which means they have to wait for 3-4 years or more to get GC which makes the wait time almost a decade since they came here. This means their career is almost killed, their spouses are unhappy, no real job mobility unless they get EAD card. Think about EB3 folks, if it was not for 2007 fiasco, majority of them will not have an EAD card and that would have made life really miserable. Lot of EB3 folks are silently waiting because they all have EAD card and EB3 from post 2007 fiasco must be trying hard to jump to EB2 making EB2 new EB3.

Future generation should only migrate here, if they are given strategic positions and having their GC done in EB1. Many of friends have arrived here on executive positions and got their GCs in 6-7 months. This way, their immigration process is relatively easier except that they may get home sick and may decide to go back, but atleast you are in control of your fate and not USCIS and hope to get anything done in legislation.

Handful of Indians think about future generation and its mostly high skilled backlogged immigrants who think about this. If we want to have real impact we need support from citizens too similar to latino community. Once EB2 people starts feeling EB3 are doing lot of porting, they will start fighting with EB3 folks and unity will go out the window . For some folks, EB3 people are not really high skilled
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 04-19-2016, 11:56 AM
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Anshuman Mishra's nice try!

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Originally Posted by suresh.telu View Post
Nice Sales pitch.
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