Lee Xiong and Pachova Yang are second generation Asian Americans. They say their families' main reason to move to the U.S. was to live the "American dream."
Xiong explained, “It's the idea that it's America and living the American dream. Being in a place you could do almost anything you can't do back home where you're from, so it's a fresh start over.”
According to a new survey that idea still holds true to many Asian immigrants. The report shows Asian Americans have overtaken Latinos, as the largest group of new immigrants arriving in the U.S., each year. In 2010, about 36% of all new immigrants who came to the U.S. were Asian. That's 5% more than Latino immigrants. Taking a look at the numbers in the valley, most Asian Americans live in Fresno County. They make up 11% of the county's population. More than 3% are Indian and Filipino. And of course, there's the Hmong community. Nearly a quarter of a million Hmongs live in the U.S. A number of them live in the Central Valley.
“One of the main things the Hmong community has in mind is to always persevere and go to the top and make a lot of money. That's where riches and happiness comes from, and having a stable job,” said Yang.
The report also shows nationally, Asian Americans have the highest incomes, are the best educated, and are happier compared with other groups. The median income for Asian American households was $66,000 in 2010 compared with nearly $50,000 for the U.S. population. The study also found 61% of Asian American adults have at least a bachelor's degree. That's twice as high as non-Asian immigrants.
We've been in the bottom, but we've finally reached the top.
Experts say part of the immigration shift comes from changes happening along the U.S., Mexico border. They say tighter border security, a rise in deportations, and changing economic conditions has slowed down migration flow from Mexico to the U.S.
Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Korean, Filipino and Vietnamese comprise more than 80% of all Asians in the U.S.