I received an interesting email from my last post (https://edumacated.wordpress.com/2011/07/16/higher-ed-in-china/) regarding the potential of a brain drain for the United States as more Chinese students may opt to attend Chinese universities.
My feeling is that this impacts talent in the States in a number of ways. First, i’ve always viewed students that are willing to travel internationally for their education to be special. They are, in my opinion, the cream of the crop in terms of maturation and the seriousness with which they approach their education. Along with that, their drive and ambition, again in my opinion, are higher than their peers. To no longer have that type of student in US universities would create a talent shortage. True enough, it does provide an opportunity for other students as this is far from a zero sum contest.
Second, in terms of the larger work force, this would almost certainly result in fewer Chinese students moving/staying in the States after graduation. Companies will still recruit them, albeit with different home locations in mind. In the overall picture of global competition for human resources, there will be a balancing amongst countries. In my opinion, there is no reason to doubt that the next Silicon Valley could occur outside of the US.