COLLEGE-EDUCATED IMMIGRANTS IN THE UNITED STATES

A recent report by Qingqing Ji and Jeanne Batalova for Migration Policy Institute paints an interesting picture about college-educated immigrants in the United States.
Contrary to a widely held view, immigrants in the United States have an expansive range of education levels, with about one in three immigrants having obtained a college degree.
Among the key highlights:

  • One in six college-educated adults was born abroad. 
  • The college-educated immigrant population grew faster than their native counterparts in the 1990s and 2000s. 
  • College-educated immigrants were younger than their native counterparts. 
  • Almost three-quarters of foreign-born, college-educated adults were Asian and white. 
  • About 17 percent of college-educated immigrants were of Latino origin. 
  • The foreign born were more likely to hold a doctorate or professional degree than the native born. 
  • Of the 9.4 million college-educated foreign born, one-third arrived in the last 11 years. 
  • Over half of all college-educated immigrants came from Asia, with India, the Philippines, and China being the top three origin countries. 
  • College-educated immigrants were more likely to be unemployed than the native born. 
  • About one in ten college-educated adults was self-employed. 
  • Foreign-born, college-educated workers were more likely to be in high-tech, science, or engineering occupations.

It is amazing that such a large percentage of our college-educated people living in the United States were born abroad. Unfortunately, the immigration system in our country prevents many qualified college graduates to get here and remain here. It’s time for immigration reform!

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