The New Wave of African Immigrants in the United States

Holly E. Reed, Queens College, City University of New York (CUNY)
Catherine S. Andrzejewski, Principia International
Diana Strumbos, Graduate Center, City University of New York (CUNY)

This paper examines demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of African immigrants in the U.S. over time and compares them to the native born and all foreign born. We use data from the 1980, 1990 and 2000 Census and 2008 American Community Survey. We focus on trends and key characteristics of the African born in the U.S., and specifically in New York City, which has historically been home to the largest concentration of African immigrants. We find the interesting paradox of higher education and greater labor force participation among African immigrants (versus both native born and all immigrants), yet greater levels of poverty and lower incomes. Using logit and OLS regression models and the 2008 ACS data, we investigate the linkages between race, educational attainment, employment, occupation, and earnings among African immigrants. Preliminary findings indicate that African immigrants are particularly disdvantaged in the U.S. labor market, despite their high levels of education.

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Presented in Poster Session 2