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Educational and Early Labor Market Trajectories among Immigrant and Native Youth: Cross-cohort comparison

1R01HD037054, 1999-2003, funded by the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)

Research on the children of the "new" immigrants in the United States presents somewhat conflicting images of their educational trajectories. Some researchers point to a decline among second-generation youth while others suggest immigrant youth have access to familial resources that lead to remarkably high levels of educational attainment. This project focuses on the educational attainment and early labor market outcomes for two cohorts of adolescents in the United States in the 1980s-2000. We ask whether trajectories differ for two different cohorts of youth in the United States in order to test expectations of theoretical views of immigrant youth adaptation. Assimilation theory posits a universal process that adheres in the migration process itself and thus should be applicable to generation status groups across time. On the other hand, more recent research has given rise to concerns that new arrivals and the children of recent arrivals will somehow not succeed or follow the “straight line” assimilation path of previous cohorts. Results of the study suggest that factors associated with reception and opportunities in the United States such as race, ethnicity and the economic status of the family of origin are far more predictive of outcomes than generation status itself.

CePoD Involvement: Jennifer Glick (Principal Investigator)

Research publications:

Song, Chunyan and Jennifer E. Glick. 2004. “College Attendance and Choice of College Majors among Asian American Students.” Social Science Quarterly, 85 (Special Issue): 1401-1421.

Glick, Jennifer E. and Michael J. White. 2004 “Parental Aspirations and Post-Secondary School Participation among Immigrant and Native Youth in the United States.” Social Science Research, 33: 272-299.

Glick, Jennifer E. and Michael J. White. 2003. “The Academic Trajectories of Immigrant Youth: Analysis Within and Across Cohorts.” Demography, 40: 759-784.

Glick, Jennifer E. 2000. “Nativity, Duration of Residence in the United States and the Life Course Pattern of Extended Family Living Arrangements in the United States.” Population Research and Policy Review, 19(2):179-198

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T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics
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