Approximately four million new immigrants enter the U.S. each year. The top countries for new immigrants were China (149,000) and India (129,000). The next largest group of new immigrants came from the Philippines (46,000). After the Great Recession, immigration from Mexico and Latin America decreased. In recent years, however, large flows have returned. However, it is important to remember that the country of origin of an immigrant is not necessarily representative of its culture or values.
A refugee is an alien who seeks protection outside their country of origin because they are being persecuted in their home country. They may not be able to return to their country because of persecution or fear of harm. They enter the United States through the Refugee Resettlement Program. After one year, asylees may apply for lawful permanent resident status. After five years, they may qualify for U.S. citizenship.
There are many causes for migration. One theory identifies two kinds of factors that influence immigration: the economics and political factors that attract newcomers. The most obvious is immigration. There were fourteen million people who fled British India to Pakistan in the late 1940s. Likewise, three million to four million migrants came from Afghanistan and five to six millions were refugees from Syria in the 1980s. Historically, these were just a small sample. Nevertheless, they have made a significant contribution to the development of the United States.
Despite the challenges, the United States is home to a large population of highly educated immigrants who contribute significantly to the scientific workforce. These immigrants also have children who do very well in school, reaching the top tiers of occupational distribution. However, their educational achievement does not reach parity with the native-born. Because of low English proficiency and cultural differences, undocumented immigrants are subject to social and work stigma. This is particularly true of undocumented immigrants who often face discrimination due to their immigration status.
Immigration has contributed billions of dollars to the U.S. economy. Almost half of all immigrants in the U.S. have acquired citizenship. According to the American Immigration Council, immigrants make up a significant percentage of the workforce in the U.S. – and they’re a vital part of the country’s economy. Moreover, immigrant entrepreneurs account for tens of billions of dollars in business income. In fact, nearly a quarter of all new U.S. businesses are founded by immigrants.
While immigration is a common process in the United States, it is important to remember that immigrants come from different countries. Some are born in a country, but were never legally allowed to stay. Others have traveled to their new home to seek a better life. In most cases, immigrants are lawful permanent residents or citizens, but they must undergo a lengthy vetting process to gain legal residency. Immigrants are encouraged to work in their new countries, learn the language and culture, and explore employment opportunities.
Although the educational level of immigrants in the U.S. varies, they’re still just as likely to have a bachelor’s degree as native-born residents. Despite this, the majority of immigrants have low educational levels compared to their country of origin. Some immigrants from Latin America, Mexico and Central America were three times less likely to graduate from high school than their U.S. counterparts. However, immigrants from all regions of the world have an equivalent chance of earning an advanced degree.