Education Levels Higher Among Recent Immigrants

Communications Associate

October 7, 2015

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A new Pew Research Center analysis has found that recent immigrants to the United States are the most highly educated in history, as the National Journal highlighted Tuesday.

Educational attainment has risen over the past 50 years among U.S. adults overall. But data from the U.S. Census Bureau show that 41 percent of immigrants arriving in the past five years have at least a bachelor’s degree, and that recent immigrants remain more likely to have earned a degree than people born here.

These findings come 50 years after the “milestone” Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 became law, setting in motion demographic changes that will continue in decades to come.

“The path to immigration reform may again be long and twisted, but the outcome may be read in the inexorable facts of demography,” Mae Ngai, a history professor at Columbia University, writes in The Nation.

“Our continuing demographic changes have ushered in an era of new possibility for our country,” said Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum. “Immigrants and their families continue to seize educational opportunities. As they do, our nation thrives and all of us benefit.”