Washington, Feb uary 8: Surveys conducted by Rice University’s Kinder Institute have found that U.S.-born Asians (about 60 percent) are much more likely to be college-educated than U.S.-born Anglos (under 40 percent).
This is the first systematic look at the local Asian population based on three surveys conducted over a 16-year period.
The surveys, conducted in 1995, 2002 and 2011 in conjunction with the annual Kinder Institute Houston Area Survey, directed questions about demographics, life experiences and societal issues to all of Houston’s varied Asian communities.
The surveys explored the similarities and differences among the Houston area’s four largest Asian communities: the Vietnamese, Indian/Pakistani, Chinese/Taiwanese and Filipino populations.
The surveys found that growing proportions of Harris County’s Asian adults are now the U.S.-born children of Asian immigrants, and they are even better educated than their parents. In the 2011 survey, 31 percent of the Asian respondents were born in America, compared with only 10 percent in 1995, when the first Asian survey was conducted.
U.S.-born Asians are more likely than the Asian immigrants to be college-educated (58 percent of first-generation Asians and 61 percent in the second generation). In sharp contrast, only 37 percent of Harris County’s U.S.-born Anglos have college degrees.
The American-born Asians are earning higher incomes than their first-generation counterparts: 42 percent of the U.S.-born Asians aged 25 and older are making 75,000 dollars or more per year, compared with 29 percent of first-generation immigrants.
U.S.-born Asians (91 percent) are also more likely than first-generation immigrants (79 percent) to have close personal friends who are Anglo, and 84 percent of U.S.-born Asians are more likely than first-generation immigrants (60 percent) to have close friends who are African-American. Moreover, 61 percent said they had been in a romantic relationship with someone who was non-Asian, compared with just 32 percent of the Asian immigrants.
Despite levels of education that are much higher on average than those of Anglos, Asians generally have lower household incomes. Thirty-six percent of Anglos report household incomes of more than 75,000 dollars, compared with only 28 percent of all Asians.
“Part of this difference may be due to being younger and having arrived as immigrants with educational credentials that may be difficult to transfer into a new society,” said Stephen Klineberg, Kinder Institute co-director and Rice sociologist.
“Part of it also may reflect the impact of continuing discrimination that makes it harder for Asians to reach the top positions in the American economy,” he added.
Klineberg released the findings at an event hosted by the institute at the Asia Society Texas Center. (ANI)