By Michael Matza, Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Writer
Asians have surpassed Latinos in annual immigration to the United States, a demographic watershed reflecting the recent decline in illegal immigration from Mexico, and increased demand for highly skilled workers from such nations as India, China, and South Korea.
In 2000, about 1.2 million Latinos entered the United States, compared with 400,000 Asians. By 2009, the groups were tied at about 400,000 each. Since then, Asian arrivals have held a slight lead.
The findings were released Tuesday in a Pew Research Center report, “The Rise of Asian Americans.” It was based on U.S. Census Bureau data and a telephone survey of more than 3,500 new immigrants from the six largest Asian subgroups: Chinese, Filipinos, Indians, Vietnamese, Koreans, and Japanese.
“A century ago, most Asian Americans were low-skilled, low-wage laborers crowded into ethnic enclaves and targets of official discrimination,” the authors wrote.
Now, many are recruited by U.S. companies, or come here to pursue advanced degrees.
Much more at the link.
When I read this story this morning in the print edition of the Inquirer, the first thing I thought about were the Occupy protests of last year. The Occupiers, a group consisting largely of college students and recent college graduates, were complaining that there just were no jobs for them. Your Editor noted, last November, an article in THE WALL STREET JOURNAL concerning American students selecting easier majors, despite the prospect of less pay and more difficulty in finding jobs, and we had some fun with El Marco’s pictures from the Denver Occupy rally.
While El Marco snarked about the “job fairy” providing such, I’d ask the question more seriously: just what better jobs does he believe ought to exist?
And it seems that those better jobs do exist, and exist to the extent that American companies are recruiting in Asia to find people to fill those jobs, because they can’t find enough Americans with the proper education and skills to fill those jobs. In recruiting Asians — or any non-Americans — such companies are hiring people who normally do not speak English as a first language and frequently have different enough accents to cause communication problems with other workers and with customers. Those companies ought to prefer American employees, simply due to the language and cultural problems which would be avoided.
Of course, students are perfectly free to choose their majors any way in which they see fit. But your Editor is less than sympathetic when students are graduated with degrees in majors that just don’t do well in the job market when they could have chosen something more practical.