Publication Date


Faculty Advisor

Michael Seeborg

Graduation Year



In 1977, Chiswick came to the general conclusion that second-generation immigrants in the United States have experienced upward income mobility, earning higher wages than their parents. This paper will attempt to explain why this is and how the specific parental combinations making up each second-generation immigrant affects their labor market potential. While there is plenty of research on the first generation of Mexican immigrants, there is not as much research on the assimilation of the second generation. We cannot know the full effect of immigrants on the economy without knowing how their children, who would not be here if not for the first generation, perform in the economy. This paper contributes to the literature by examining and comparing wages of natives with both the first and second generation of Mexican immigrants, as well as other immigrants. To more specifically analyze the second generation, we subcategorize them into three groups:1) both parents being born in Mexico, 2) one parent being born in Mexico and one parent born in the U.S., and 3) one parent being born in Mexico with one parent from any other country that is not the U.S. or Mexico. This will give a better idea of the outcomes of different parental combinations on their children’s performance.



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