High-skilled Immigrants in the
Massachusetts Civilian Labor Force:
U.S./Foreign Degrees
Boston Redevelopment Authority
Alv...
2
Produced by the BRA Research Division
Alvaro Lima – Director 
Mark Melnik – Deputy Director
Kelly Dowd – Research Manage...
Some Definitions:
Foreign‐born Worker: Used interchangeably with “immigrant worker” throughout this presentation to refer ...
U.S. Degree
50%
Foreign Degree
50%
High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers by 
U.S./Foreign degree
Male 
52%
Female
48%
U.S. Deg...
 Among high-skilled foreign-born workers with a foreign degree, the
majority earned a graduate degree.
 Of those who ear...
 The top five countries of origin among high-skilled foreign-born workers
with a U.S. degree are India, China, Vietnam, C...
7
14%
10%
4%
4%
4%
3%
2%
2%
2%2%2%2%
2%2%
2%
2%
2%1%
1%
1%
36%
Top 20 Countries of Birth of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Work...
 High-skilled foreign-born workers with a foreign degree tend to be older
than those with a U.S. degree.
8
7.2%
40.9%
26....
 98% of those who earned their degree in the U.S. are English Proficient (EP).
 Those with a foreign degree are more lik...
10
0.0%
2.0%
4.0%
6.0%
8.0%
10.0%
12.0%
14.0%
16.0%
Management
Business and Financial Operations
Computer and Mathematical...
11
0.0%
2.0%
4.0%
6.0%
8.0%
10.0%
12.0%
14.0%
Management
Business and Financial Operations
Computer and Mathematical
Archi...
12
13.6%
12.4%
11.2%
9.6% 9.5%
8.0%
5.0%
4.6%
2.8%
2.4% 2.3% 2.3%
1.9% 1.6% 1.6%
11.1%
0.0%
2.0%
4.0%
6.0%
8.0%
10.0%
12.0...
13
12.6% 12.5%
11.5%
4.8% 4.6% 4.2%
3.4% 3.3% 3.2% 3.1% 2.6% 2.6% 2.5% 2.3% 1.9%
24.7%
0.0%
5.0%
10.0%
15.0%
20.0%
25.0%
3...
14
4.5%
3.0%
5.1%
8.8%
0.0% 1.0% 2.0% 3.0% 4.0% 5.0% 6.0% 7.0% 8.0% 9.0% 10.0%
English Proficiency
Limited English Profici...
 Most high-skilled foreign-born workers (independent of the origin of their
degree) work in high-skilled occupations.
 T...
 High-skilled foreign-born workers, regardless of where they obtained their
degrees, are over-represented in the fields o...
17
U.S. Degree Foreign Degree
Occupations 
English 
Proficiency %
Limited 
English 
Proficiency %
English 
Proficiency %
L...
18
U.S. Degree Foreign Degree
Field of Study
English 
Proficiency %
Limited 
English 
Proficiency %
English 
Proficiency %...
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High-skilled Immigrants in the Massachusetts Civilian Labor Force: U.S./Foreign Degrees

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High-skilled Immigrants in the Massachusetts Civilian Labor Force: U.S./Foreign Degrees

  1. 1. High-skilled Immigrants in the Massachusetts Civilian Labor Force: U.S./Foreign Degrees Boston Redevelopment Authority Alvaro Lima, Director of Research April 2014
  2. 2. 2 Produced by the BRA Research Division Alvaro Lima – Director  Mark Melnik – Deputy Director Kelly Dowd – Research Manager Kevin Kang – Research Associate  Nicoya M. Borella – Research Assistant  Interns Chandana Cherukupalli The BRA Research Division strives to understand the current environment of the city to produce quality research  and targeted information that will inform and benefit the residents and businesses of Boston. The Division conducts  research on Boston's economy, population, and commercial markets for all departments of the BRA, the City of  Boston, and related organizations.  The information provided in this report is the best available at the time of its publication. All or partial use of this report must be cited. Our preferred citation is as follows: Boston Redevelopment  Authority/Research Division, 2014 For more information about research produced by the Boston Redevelopment Authority, please contact Kelly  Dowd, Research Manager, by email at kelly.dowd@boston.gov or by telephone at (617) 918‐4474.
  3. 3. Some Definitions: Foreign‐born Worker: Used interchangeably with “immigrant worker” throughout this presentation to refer to  persons born outside the United States, excluding those born abroad to American citizens. Puerto Ricans are U.S.  citizens and are not considered immigrants. Civilian Labor Force: A term used by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to describe the subset of Americans  who have jobs or are seeking a job, are at least 16 years old, are not serving in the military and are not  institutionalized. High‐Skilled/Mid‐Skilled/Low‐Skilled Foreign‐born Worker: High‐skilled is defined as foreign‐born persons in the  civilian labor force with at least a Bachelor’s degree (BA+); Mid‐skilled are those with some college or associated  degree; Low‐skilled are those lacking a high school diploma or less. Limited English Proficiency (LEP): This term refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English  “less than well,” as classified by the U.S. Census Bureau. Average Wages: The sum of wages, tips, and the like subject to Federal income taxes as reported by employers on  Form W‐2. Foreign Degree: Those with a Bachelor’s degree or higher were identified as having a “foreign degree” if they were  25 or older at the time of their entry into the U.S.  U.S. Degree: Those with a Bachelor’s degree or higher were identified as having a “U.S. degree” if they were  younger than 25 at the time of their entry into the U.S.  3
  4. 4. U.S. Degree 50% Foreign Degree 50% High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers by  U.S./Foreign degree Male  52% Female 48% U.S. Degree Male  58% Female 42% Foreign Degree Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis 4  Among high-skilled foreign-born workers, half have a degree from within the U.S. and half have a foreign-degree. o Among those with a foreign-degree, 58% are male and 42% are female. o Among those with a U.S. degree, 52% are male and 48% are female.
  5. 5.  Among high-skilled foreign-born workers with a foreign degree, the majority earned a graduate degree.  Of those who earned their degree in the U.S., 55% earned a Bachelor’s degree. 5 55.0% 45.0% 43.3% 56.7% 0.0% 10.0% 20.0% 30.0% 40.0% 50.0% 60.0% Bachelor's Degree Master's Degree and Above High‐skilled Foreign‐Born Workers Educational Attainment                                     by U.S./Foreign Degree U.S. Degree Foreign Degree Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis
  6. 6.  The top five countries of origin among high-skilled foreign-born workers with a U.S. degree are India, China, Vietnam, Canada and Haiti. 6 12% 9% 5% 4% 4% 3% 3% 3% 3% 2%2%2%2% 2%2%2% 1% 1%1% 1% 37% Top 20 Countries of Birth of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers, U.S. Degree India China Vietnam Canada Haiti Korea Brazil Hong Kong Russia Dominican Republic Taiwan Germany Portugal England Poland Jamaica Colombia Lebanon Iran Ireland Other Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis
  7. 7. 7 14% 10% 4% 4% 4% 3% 2% 2% 2%2%2%2% 2%2% 2% 2% 2%1% 1% 1% 36% Top 20 Countries of Birth of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers, Foreign Degree India China Brazil Russia Canada Korea Philippines United Kingdom, Not Specified Germany Ukraine Dominican Republic Haiti England Japan Taiwan Colombia France Poland Ireland Israel Other Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis  The top five countries of origin among high-skilled foreign-born workers holding a U.S. degree are India, China, Brazil, Russia and Canada.
  8. 8.  High-skilled foreign-born workers with a foreign degree tend to be older than those with a U.S. degree. 8 7.2% 40.9% 26.5% 15.6% 8.0% 1.8% 0.0% 21.1% 33.7% 27.0% 13.7% 4.4% 0.0% 5.0% 10.0% 15.0% 20.0% 25.0% 30.0% 35.0% 40.0% 45.0% 19‐24 25‐34 35‐44 45‐54 55‐64 65+ Age Distribution of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers  by U.S./Foreign Degree U.S. Degree Foreign Degree Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis
  9. 9.  98% of those who earned their degree in the U.S. are English Proficient (EP).  Those with a foreign degree are more likely to be Limited English Proficient (LEP). 9 98% 2% U.S. Degree English Proficient Limited English Proficiency 94% 6% Foreign Degree English Proficient Limited English Proficiency Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis English Proficiency of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers by U.S./Foreign Degree
  10. 10. 10 0.0% 2.0% 4.0% 6.0% 8.0% 10.0% 12.0% 14.0% 16.0% Management Business and Financial Operations Computer and Mathematical Architecture and Engineering Life, Physical, and Social Science Community and Social Service Legal Education, Training, and Library Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Healthcare Support Protective Service Food Preparation and Serving Related Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Personal Care and Service Sales and Related Office and Administrative Support Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Construction and Extraction Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Production Transportation and Material Moving English Proficiency Limited English Proficiency Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis Occupations of High-skilled Foreign-born Workers by English Proficiency, U.S. Degree
  11. 11. 11 0.0% 2.0% 4.0% 6.0% 8.0% 10.0% 12.0% 14.0% Management Business and Financial Operations Computer and Mathematical Architecture and Engineering Life, Physical, and Social Science Community and Social Service Legal Education, Training, and Library Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Healthcare Support Protective Service Food Preparation and Serving Related Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Personal Care and Service Sales and Related Office and Administrative Support Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Construction and Extraction Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Production Transportation and Material Moving English Proficiency Limited English Proficiency Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis Occupations of High-skilled Foreign-born Workers by English Proficiency, Foreign Degree
  12. 12. 12 13.6% 12.4% 11.2% 9.6% 9.5% 8.0% 5.0% 4.6% 2.8% 2.4% 2.3% 2.3% 1.9% 1.6% 1.6% 11.1% 0.0% 2.0% 4.0% 6.0% 8.0% 10.0% 12.0% 14.0% 16.0% Top 15 Countries of Birth of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers with Limited English Proficiency,  U.S. Degree* *Note: The total count for High‐skilled Foreign‐Born Workers with Limited English Proficiency, U.S. Degree is 1,814. Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis  The top 5 countries of birth among high-skilled foreign-born workers who are LEP with a U.S. degree are Brazil, Vietnam, China, Guatemala, and Dominican Republic.
  13. 13. 13 12.6% 12.5% 11.5% 4.8% 4.6% 4.2% 3.4% 3.3% 3.2% 3.1% 2.6% 2.6% 2.5% 2.3% 1.9% 24.7% 0.0% 5.0% 10.0% 15.0% 20.0% 25.0% 30.0% Top 15 Countries of Birth of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers with Limited English Proficiency,  Foreign Degree* *Note: The total count for High‐skilled Foreign‐Born Workers with Limited English Proficiency, Foreign Degree is Degree is 7,146. Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis  The top 5 countries of birth among high-skilled foreign-born workers who are LEP with a foreign degree are China, Brazil, Dominican Republic, Ukraine, and Japan.
  14. 14. 14 4.5% 3.0% 5.1% 8.8% 0.0% 1.0% 2.0% 3.0% 4.0% 5.0% 6.0% 7.0% 8.0% 9.0% 10.0% English Proficiency Limited English Proficiency English Proficiency Limited English Proficiency U.S. DegreeForeign Degree Unemployment Rate Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis  High-skilled foreign-born workers who are LEP and have a foreign degree have the highest unemployment rate, at 8.8%. o Those who are LEP and have a U.S. degree have the lowest unemployment rate, at 3%.
  15. 15.  Most high-skilled foreign-born workers (independent of the origin of their degree) work in high-skilled occupations.  Those with a U.S. degree have a small advantage in Management; Business and Financial Operations; and Architecture and Engineering. 15 Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis 0.0% 2.0% 4.0% 6.0% 8.0% 10.0% 12.0% 14.0% 16.0% Management Business and Financial Operations Computer and Mathematical Architecture and Engineering Life, Physical, and Social Science Community and Social Service Legal Education, Training, and Library Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Healthcare Support Protective Service Food Preparation and Serving Related Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Personal Care and Service Sales and Related Office and Administrative Support Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Construction and Extraction Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Production Transportation and Material Moving Occupations of High‐skilled Foreign‐Born Workers by U.S./Foreign Degree U.S. Degree Foreign Degree High-skill Occupations Management Occupations Business and Financial Operation Computer and Mathematics Architecture and Engineering Life, Physical and social Science Community and Social Service Legal Occupation Education, Training and Library Art, Design, Entertainment, Sport and Media Healthcare Practitioners and Technology
  16. 16.  High-skilled foreign-born workers, regardless of where they obtained their degrees, are over-represented in the fields of Business, Humanities, Social Science and Communications. 16 18.9% 15.0% 6.8% 29.9% 11.0% 13.7% 3.1% 1.5% 0.1% 13.1% 21.5% 6.8% 30.3% 10.4% 10.4% 6.0% 1.1% 0.3% 0.0% 5.0% 10.0% 15.0% 20.0% 25.0% 30.0% 35.0% Business Natural Science Healthcare and Medical Engeneering, Computer and Mathematics Humanities Social Science Education Communication Other U.S. Degree Foreign Degree Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2009‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis Field of Study of High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers by U.S./Foreign Degree
  17. 17. 17 U.S. Degree Foreign Degree Occupations  English  Proficiency % Limited  English  Proficiency % English  Proficiency % Limited  English  Proficiency % Management 1,064 6.3% 935 5.1% 0 0.0% 41 1.1% Business and Financial Operations 1,028 6.1% 707 3.8% 0 0.0% 57 1.6% Computer and Mathematical 821 4.9% 682 3.7% 0 0.0% 0 0.0% Architecture and Engineering 219 1.3% 226 1.2% 0 0.0% 0 0.0% Life, Physical, and Social Science 788 4.7% 663 3.6% 10 1.4% 42 1.2% Community and Social Service 388 2.3% 525 2.9% 0 0.0% 62 1.7% Legal 103 0.6% 100 0.5% 0 0.0% 19 0.5% Education, Training, and Library 3,563 21.1% 3,271 17.8% 68 9.2% 158 4.4% Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media 800 4.7% 593 3.2% 0 0.0% 11 0.3% Healthcare Practitioners and Technical 1,123 6.6% 821 4.5% 10 1.4% 70 2.0% Healthcare Support 524 3.1% 857 4.7% 0 0.0% 88 2.5% Protective Service 156 0.9% 150 0.8% 0 0.0% 53 1.5% Food Preparation and Serving Related 785 4.6% 1,108 6.0% 131 17.8% 506 14.2% Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance 381 2.3% 667 3.6% 73 9.9% 409 11.5% Personal Care and Service 569 3.4% 1,027 5.6% 93 12.6% 348 9.7% Sales and Related 2,098 12.4% 2,360 12.8% 80 10.9% 317 8.9% Office and Administrative Support 1,543 9.1% 1,666 9.1% 42 5.7% 339 9.5% Farming, Fishing, and Forestry 26 0.2% 0 0.0% 0 0.0% 97 2.7% Construction and Extraction 317 1.9% 198 1.1% 61 8.3% 182 5.1% Installation, Maintenance, and Repair 65 0.4% 56 0.3% 40 5.4% 13 0.4% Production 188 1.1% 940 5.1% 50 6.8% 372 10.4% Transportation and Material Moving 363 2.1% 843 4.6% 78 10.6% 388 10.9% Total 16,912 100.0% 18,395 100.0% 736 100.0% 3,572 100.0% Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis Low‐paid High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers by Occupation, U.S./Foreign Degree, and English Proficiency  Among low-paid high-skilled foreign-born workers: o Those with a U.S. degree are most likely to work in Education, Training, and Library; Sales and Related; and Office and Administrative, regardless of their English proficiency. o Those with a foreign degree who are EP predominantly work in Food Preparation and Serving; Personal Care and Service; Sales and Related; and Transportation and Material Moving. o Those with a foreign degree who are LEP predominantly work in Food Preparation and Serving; Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance; Production; and Transportation and Material Moving.
  18. 18. 18 U.S. Degree Foreign Degree Field of Study English  Proficiency % Limited  English  Proficiency % English  Proficiency % Limited  English  Proficiency % Business 20,548 18.9% 382 23.7% 13,648 12.8% 1,272 18.1% Natural Science 16,383 15.0% 170 10.6% 23,176 21.7% 1,279 18.2% Healthcare and Medical 7,389 6.8% 83 5.2% 7,415 7.0% 287 4.1% Engineering, Computer and  Mathematics 32,759 30.1% 289 17.9% 32,717 30.7% 1,729 24.6% Humanities 11,862 10.9% 327 20.3% 11,082 10.4% 759 10.8% Social Science 14,879 13.7% 221 13.7% 11,019 10.3% 841 11.9% Education 3,336 3.1% 116 7.2% 6,057 5.7% 802 11.4% Communication 1,608 1.5% 23 1.4% 1,178 1.1% 70 1.0% Other 153 0.1% 0 0.0% 392 0.4% 0 0.0% Total 108,917 100.0% 1,611 100.0% 106,684 100.0% 7,039 100.0% Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2009‐2011 American Community Survey, Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), BRA Research Division Analysis High‐skilled Foreign‐born Workers by  Field of Study, U.S./Foreign Degree and English Proficiency  Among high-skilled foreign-born workers with a U.S. degree: o Those who are EP are largely studied Engineering, Computers and Mathematics. o Those who are LEP are concentrated in the Humanities.  Among high-skilled foreign-born workers with a foreign degree: o Those who are both EP and LEP studied Engineering, Computers and Mathematics.

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