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Migration Policy Institute Podcasts

MPI is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank dedicated to the study of the movement of people worldwide.

Up for Grabs: The Gains and Prospects of First- and Second-Generation Young Adults

Posted by migrationpolicy on November 15th, 2011

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During this 30-minute presentation, Migration Policy Institute Senior Vice President Michael Fix and Policy Analyst Jeanne Batalova discuss their report, Up for Grabs: The Gains and Prospects of First- and Second-Generation Young Adults, which profiles the population of first- and second-generation young adults in the United States between the ages of 16 and 26. These young adults from immigrant families, numbering 11.3 million, represent one in four people in the United States between the ages of 16-26 and account for half of the growth of the young adult population between 1995 and 2010. This report, done through a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, finds substantial generational progress in terms of high school graduation, college enrollment, and ability to earn family-sustaining wages. Second-generation Hispanic women are faring particularly well, with college enrollment rates equal to those of third-generation non-Hispanic white women. However, they are not graduating from college at the same rate or on the same timeline because of family, work, or economic reasons. The report sketches how postsecondary education, workforce development, and language training programs could better meet the needs of this population, which will assume a greater role as the US workforce ages.