Immigration Reflection

The immigration unit has opened my eyes up to a new view of US immigration that I, personally, had not been aware of until now. In our resource guide projects, I am part of the group that is finding resources that revolve around the causes of immigration and I was assigned the job of finding resources that contained statistical evidence. I came to find things such as the fact that, in 1970, there were an estimated 9.6 million immigrants in the United States, making up 4.7% of the US population as a whole. Comparing that to today, there are an estimated 42.4 million immigrants in the US, making up 13.3% of the United States total population (318.9 million). I was amazed how the change of increase in immigrant population grew larger each year. From 1970-1980 there were 5 million more immigrants that came to the US, and from 1990-2000 there were 12 million immigrants that came to the US. I never realized how significant in size our immigrant population was and is today.
Another main thing that became apparent to me through our immigration unit was the emotional aspect that immigrants faced in coming to the United States. I specifically remember, in the video we watched as a class, the student named Sing who spoke Burmese. At first he acted fine, yet he struggled academically and didn’t attempt to communicate with others (teachers and other kids). Later on in the film we see Sing in his room alone, talking about the struggles he has come to face since he had left Myanmar. He came to the United States alone and left his family behind. He goes on to explain that communication between him and teachers as well as other students is extremely difficult, as he speaks barely any English. As a result of this, he says it’s extremely hard to make any friends and that he feels alone. When people look at immigration from the perspective of an immigrant as well as statistical data, multiple aspects of immigration, such as the impact that immigration has on the United States and the impact that the US experience has on immigrants, that may not have been apparent at first are shown out in the open.

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