Immigrants and Education

Migration remains a hot political topic in Europe and the United States. Immigration opponents often portray migrants as, among other things, poorly educated people who will become an economic burden on their new homelands. Look closer. (Full disclosure: Your Friday author is blessed to have married his way into a remarkable family who arrived in the US as immigrants.)


  • According to a recent Pew Research study, the average immigrant from sub-Saharan Africa has more years of education than the average citizen of the US or European community in which he or she settles. (Italy is the exception.) Nearly 70 percent of African immigrants over 25 who live in the US had some college experience.
  • Beyond Africans, a 2017 Pew Research study reported that a higher percentage (31 percent) of all immigrants to the US have either a university or graduate degree than do native-born Americans (30 percent).
  • The emphasis on education extends across generations. A 2015 report from the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine found that a higher percentage of the children of college-educated immigrants earn graduate degrees and get top-tier jobs than the children of native-born Americans.
  • An important caveat: immigrant education levels vary considerably by region. Some 57 percent of immigrants from Mexico and 49 percent of immigrants from Central America have not graduated high school. The comparable figures are 13 percent from the Middle East, 11 percent from Europe and Canada, and 12 percent from Sub-Saharan Africa. Just 9 percent of US-born adults lack a high school degree.

Immigrants and their children can contribute more to their adopted countries and their economies than some seem to think.


How will our cities and lives change in the future? What about a structure with a roller skating rink above a swimming pool, made out of transparent solar panels that power the entire park? This was the innovation invented by Eni's young researchers based on Luminescent Solar Concentrators, developed through Eni's research.

Watch the latest episode of Funny Applications, Eni's video series that imagines new uses for technology.

For 30 years, citizens of Hong Kong have gathered in Victoria Park on the evening of June 4 to honor the peaceful protesters massacred in Beijing's Tiananmen Square on that date in 1989. It has been the only public Tiananmen commemoration permitted on Chinese soil.

This year, the park was surrounded by barricades to keep people out. The officially stated reason for the shut-down? Crowds spread coronavirus. (In this city of more than 7 million, COVID has so far killed four people.)

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Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

Big news, of course, that former Secretary of Defense Mattis comes out with a public statement basically calling Trump's rule, his actions, unconstitutional and unfit for office, more divisive than any president he's ever seen.

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French protests over racial injustice: The George Floyd protests in the United States have sparked solidarity demonstrations around the world, with people flocking to US embassies in Berlin, London and elsewhere to express their outrage. But they have also inspired other countries to reexamine racial justice within their own societies. In France, where street demonstrations are practically a national pastime, thousands of people have gathered in support of the family of Adama Traoré, a 24-year old black man who died in police custody back in 2016. At least 20,000 Parisians demonstrated Wednesday, despite coronavirus bans on public gatherings. Protesters adopted similar language to the Floyd protests, demanding accountability for the officers who violently pinned down Traoré during a dispute over an identity check, leading to his death. Renewed focus on this case, which has become a potent symbol of police brutality in France, comes as coronavirus lockdowns have recently stoked tensions between the police and the mostly-minority residents of Paris' banlieues (low-income suburbs).

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