Post-Secondary Educational Attainment of Immigrant and Native Youth

Ursula Keller, Florida State University

This paper adds to the growing immigrant literature and seeks to examine generational differences in post-secondary educational outcomes in the United States. We specifically seek to better understand immigrant educational arrangements in the years immediately following high school graduation. Although some recent research finds that immigrant school children are generally successful in terms of educational outcomes, it is unclear to what extent this advantage translates into educational gains after high school. We use data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health to examine immigrant generation and country-of-origin differences in predicting college attendance of young adults between the ages of 18 and 28. We explore whether immigrant generational differences can be explained by parental expectations, behaviors and values or family relationships. The results indicate that first- and second generation immigrant youth are significantly more likely to attend college than their third-plus generation counterparts of similar race/ethnicity, socioeconomic and family characteristics.

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Presented in Session 142: Immigration and Intergenerational Mobility