May, Sarah F., Lisa Y. Flores, Stephen Jeanetta, Lindsey Saunders, Corinne Valdivia, Marvyn R. Arévalo Avalos, and Domingo Martínez. “Latina/o Immigrant Integration in the Rural Midwest: Host Community Resident and Immigrant Perspectives.” Journal of Latina/o Psychology3, no. 1 (2014): 23-39. doi:10.1037/lat0000029.

Integration: A product of the social, cultural, human, and economic assets possessed by immigrants and host community residents within a rural settlement community.

This research was done in a small farming community that looked at the increase in Latino immigration and how people were connected and the community was impacted on the whole. The growth of Latino/as in the Midwest has been the most substantial according to the 2010 census and has mostly come from the diaspora of Latinos from the cities to suburban and rural areas in the Midwest in order to pursue work, community safety, low cost of living, and family.

The study noted some interesting things that I knew, but never thought to look for in research. There is a separation in rural communities that is brought about by the lay out of the area and works to the advantage of a community that values tight knit relationships, the protection of family, and privacy. It is also particularly helpful for vulnerable groups that experience discrimination and disadvantages in city settings. The extent to which people can integrate into a new community is very much based on the expectations, attitudes, and perceived attitudes of the host community, so if everyone is a little more spread out, the study concludes that this transition is different. The study actually concluded that the concepts of “Midwest Nice” (we know they all meant Minnesota Nice) and religious communities meant that there was a more accepting community. This also draws attention to the comparison of the Latino and Apostolic communities in Morris and how they are based off of very similar beliefs and values.

A couple things that the article mentions that we should look into on both sides of the research:

The use of microaggressions to stop people from engaging in a host community. I know from personal experience some of the things that my ESL students have encountered. Am I allowed to comment on these in our research or on our website? I would also want to mention to rhetoric that other people, both students and community members say to and about the Latino and Apostolic communities.

The strongest sense of connectedness was in schools and education because of group dynamics in schools and sports. We found this in our other research and I think it correlates well with the project!

There was a lot of data in this research that I don’t believe Amy and I are going to describe explicitly in our research, but I am looking forward to seeing how those numbers relate to some other statistical research we’re looking into from Morris! One thing we need to discuss is how we’re going to move into translating the research we have done into the website and start filling it up!


One Reply to “Integration”

  1. Leland Turner says: Reply

    Joy, you have done a good job outlining your comparative study and how and why it matters. You should be careful using information or experiences from your students – you may run afoul of FERPA laws. The important thing is that you not identify any student and do not use information in a way that would or could be used to identify a particular student. Also, hearsay is a bit dubious. Identifying those attitudes and relating those experiences mentioned is relevant to your research. Can you find a study or studies that might provide that background information.
    Remember, as you plan this web site do your brainstorming in a visual way. Excellent work.

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