Entry and Selectivity for African Immigrants: Assessing Motivations for Migration and Varied Views on Adjustment in the U.S.

Natasha Rivers, University of Washington

This paper evaluates the motivations for migration that were assessed through the interview testimonies from newly arrived, 1.5, and 2nd generation sub-Saharan Africans collected in 2009-2010. Using data from the Department of Homeland Security, this study determined the entry classification of recent immigrants and refugees from sub-Saharan Africa to help understand, on a larger scale, the motivations for leaving origin countries and provide a comparative analysis of how well these different groups were able to find community, resources, education, and employment upon arrival and integration in the U.S. The interviewees reveal a broad spectrum of adjustment experiences. For instance, in many cases there was a generational component, resource component, and gender component that impacted the process of integration, either speeding it up or slowing it down.

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Presented in Session 196: Ethnoracial Diversity and Change