African immigration to the United States


African immigration to the United States

Infobox Ethnic group
group = flagicon|African Union African Immigrants (U.S.) flagicon|USA


population = 621,000nbsp|2smaller|(0.2% of U.S. population) [US Census Bureau, Africans [http://mumford1.dyndns.org/cen2000/BlackWhite/BlackDiversityReport/black-diversity03.htm] ]
regions = Washington, D.C., New York, Minneapolis, California
languages = English (Various Forms of African English, American English), Arab, Yoruba, Ashanti, Igbo, French, Wolof, Swahili, Hausa, Portuguese, Capeverdean Crioulos, Spanish, others
religions = Christianity, Islam, Traditional, others
related = Sub-Saharan Africans, African Americans, Nigerian Americans, Africans,

Africans immigrants, in the scope of this article, are recent immigrants to the United States from the continent of Africa and their descendants.

This group is to be distinguished from Black Americans who are descended from Black Africans who survived the slavery era within the boundaries of the present United States, as well Americans with roots in other parts of the African diaspora. "African", in the scope of this article refers to national origins rather than racial affiliation as defined by the U.S. Census.

Educational Attainment

Africans have the highest educational attainment rates of any immigrant group in the United States with higher levels of completion than the stereotyped Asian American model minority. [AsianNation.org [http://www.asian-nation.org/immigrant-stats.shtml] ] It is not only the first generation that does well, as estimates indicate that a highly disproportionate percentage of black students at elite universities are African or the children of African immigrants. [ [http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2007/03/black_immigrants_an_invisible.html] ] ]

Harvard University, for example, has estimated that two-thirds of their black population is not comprised of traditional black Americans. [ [http://www.uh.edu/ednews/2004/nytimes/200406/20040624harvard.html African Immigrants, NY Times] ] This is true for other universities such as Brown, Yale, Princeton, Penn, Columbia, Duke and Berkeley. [ [http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2005/02/22/MNGIJBF3LP1.DTL Berkeley, SF Chronicle] ] As a result, the benefits of affirmative action are not efficiently serving traditional multi-generational black Americans who are descendants of American slaves. [New York Times [http://www.nytimes.com/2004/06/24/education/24AFFI.final.html?ei=5007&en=92df04e0957d73d3&ex=1403409600&partner=USERLAND&pagewanted=all] ]

In an analysis of Census Bureau data by the Journal of Blacks in higher education, African immigrants to the United States were found more likely to be college educated than any other immigrant group. African immigrants to the U.S. are also more highly educated than any other native-born ethnic group including white Americans. Some 48.9 percent of all African immigrants hold a college diploma. This is slightly more than the percentage of Asian immigrants to the U.S., nearly double the rate of native-born white Americans, and nearly four times the rate of native-born African Americans. [African Immigrants in the United States are the Nation's Most Highly Educated Group. The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education, No. 26 (Winter, 1999-2000), pp. 60-61doi:10.2307/2999156]

In 1997, 19.4 percent of all adult African immigrants in the United States held a graduate degree, compared to 8.1 percent of adult whites and 3.8 percent of adult blacks in the United States, respectively. [African Immigrants in the United States are the Nation's Most Highly Educated Group. The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education, No. 26 (Winter, 1999-2000), pp. 60-61doi:10.2307/2999156] This information suggests that America has an equally large achievement gap between whites and African/Asian immigrants as they do between white and black Americans.

Of the African-born population in the United States age 25 and older 86.4% reported having a high school degree or higher, compared with 78. 9% of Asian born immigrants and 76.5% of European born immigrants, respectively. These figures contrast with 61.8% percent of the total foreign-born population. [Dixon, D. (2006). Characteristics of the African Born in the United States. Migration Policy Institute. January, 2006] Immigrants groups in general tend to have higher high school graduation rates than the native-born general American population.

Those Africans born from Zimbabwe (96.7 percent), Botswana (95.5 percent), and Malawi (95 percent) were the most likely to report having a high school degree or higher. Those born in Cape Verde (44.8 percent) and Mauritania (60.8 percent) were the least likely to report having completed a high school education. [Dixon, D. (2006). Characteristics of the African Born in the United States. Migration Policy Institute. January, 2006]

Of the European born those born in Bulgaria (92.6 percent), Switzerland (90.5 percent), and Ireland (90.4 percent) were the most likely to report having a high school degree or higher. Those born in Portugal (42.9 percent), Italy (53.7 percent), and Greece (59.9 percent) were the least likely to report having completed a high school education. [Dixon, D. (2006). Characteristics of the European Born in the United States. Migration Policy Institute. February, 2005]

Of the Asian born Mongolia (94.8 percent), Kuwait (94.7 percent), the United Arab Emirates (94.5 percent), and Qatar (94.3 percent) were most likely to report having a high school degree or higher. Those born in Laos (48.1 percent), Cambodia (48.4 percent), and Yemen (49.9 percent) were the least likely to report having completed a high school education. [Dixon, D. (2006). Characteristics of the Asian Born in the United States. Migration Policy Institute. April 2006]

In Canada similar trends can be seen where both foreign-born and Canadian-born blacks have graduation rates that exceed those of other Canadians. Similar patters of educational over-achievements are reached with years of schooling and with data from the 1994 Statistics Canada survey. [Guppy, Neil and Scott Davies (1998). Education in Canada: Recent Trends and Future Challenges. Ottawa: Statistics Canada and the Minister of Industry] [Boyd, M. (2002). Educational Attainments of Immigrant Offspring: Success or Segmented Assimilation?] Black immigrants have a higher standard of educational achievement, on average, than the overall Canadian population. [The Canadian encyclopedia, 2007. [http://thecanadianencyclopedia.com/index.cfm?PgNm=TCE&Params=A1SEC868209] ]

African immigrants to the United States are the largest immigrant group that has the lowest percentage of people not fluent in English. This is likely due to the fact that it is one of the most spoken languages in Africa, and possibly the best known continent-wide.

Culture

Because of the extremely diverse nature of African ethnic groups, there is no single African immigrant identity. However, cultural bonds are cultivated through shared ethnic or nationalistic affiliations. Some organizations like the Ghanaian group Fantse-Kuo and the Sudanese Association organize by country, region, or ethnic group. Other groups present traditional culture from a pan-African perspective. Using traditional skills and knowledge, African-born entrepreneurs develop services for immigrants and the community at large. Events such as the annual Ethiopian soccer tournament, institutions such as the AME Methodist Church African Liberation Ministry, and "friends" and "sister cities" organizations bring together different communities in the Washington area. [ [http://www.folklife.si.edu/resources/Festival1997/afrindi.htm African Immigrant Culture] ] The extent to which African immigrants engage in these activities naturally varies according to the population. While there is often a conflict in identity, whether an African immigrant is American, African-American, or an undefined category, the general trend is toward assimilation. [ [http://www.folklife.si.edu/resources/Festival1997/afrindi.htm African Immigrant Culture] ]

Visibility

Due to a small population, African immigrants are generally under the radar of average Americans. Their achievements and contributions to U.S. culture are relatively small but notable. First and second generation African immigrants can be seen in a wide variety of areas from academia to athletics to acting. Barack Obama, the junior United States Senator and candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 2008 U.S. presidential election, could possibly be included within the group because his father was a Harvard educated Kenyan. However, Obama was raised by his American mother and his father never sought permanency in the U.S. A few notable African academics include John Ogbu and Kwame Anthony Appiah. In sports, Hakeem Olajuwon and Joseph Addai are prominent, and in entertainment, Gbenga Akinnagbe, singer Akon, and rapper Chamillionaire are also distinguished. Because of the similar racial background, African immigrants are generally lumped in the with greater African American population.

External links

* [http://travel.nytimes.com/2006/06/04/travel/04weekend.html?fta=y New York Times: Tastes of Nigeria, Sounds of Sierra Leone ]
* [http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/04/01/travel/01weekend.html New York Times: Bronx: Beyond the Yankees and the Zoo]
* [http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/18/nyregion/thecity/18mali.html?ex=1331870400&en=6267a0c820415bb3&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss New York Times: Solace From a Multiethnic Tapestry]
* [http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4176/is_20070318/ai_n18741604 Oakland Tribune: Black immigrants: The invisible model minority]
* [http://www.unitedafricancongress.info/ United African Congress]

ee also

*List of topics related to Black and African people
*United States foreign born per capita income

References


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