Transnationalism and identity development in immigrant and refugee youth: Challenges, resources, and project findings

Title: Transnationalism and identity development in immigrant and refugee youth: Challenges, resources, and project findings

Author: Mosely, Jenna

Date: May 2009

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

This paper explores identity formation in first and second-generation immigrant and refugee youth influenced by transnational practices and attitudes. The author draws on a year-long research project with African and Southeast Asian teenagers entitled Bridging Barriers. The research highlights the sources of challenge (race, gender expectations, and multiple ideas of what it means to fit in) and sources of resource (supportive communities, a sense of purpose and privilege, and a counter-cultural mindset towards race facing these young immigrants). The author concludes that transnational attitudes and influences are supportive of healthy acculturation. However, how long these influences will persist is unclear.

Keywords: Africans, Southeast Asians, youth, social adaptation

Cataloged by: Peter Nelson/ B. J. Perkins

Challenges for GED attainment: A case study on school dropout Bhutanese refugee youths

Title: Challenges for GED attainment: A case study on school dropout Bhutanese refugee youths

Author: Mishra, Lalit

Date: May 2013

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

Through quantitative and qualitative analysis, this paper explores the factors that prevent Bhutanese refugee youth (18 to 25 years old) in Worcester, Massachusetts from obtaining the General Educational Development (GED) certification. Its findings indicate that refugees’ educational background, a new environment, and the responsibility and accountability of the service providers present major challenges to attaining a GED. The author concludes that an inappropriate resettlement policy with a focus on economic self-sufficiency without consideration of socio-cultural status discourages Bhutanese refugee youth from obtaining a GED certificate.

Keywords: youth, Bhutanese, education

Cataloged by: Peter Nelson/ B. J. Perkins

The refugee agricultural partnership program: A social network analysis of organizational partnerships and capacity in the United States

Title: The refugee agricultural partnership program: A social network analysis of organizational partnerships and capacity in the United States

Author: Calano, Katherine

Date: May 2013

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

This paper investigates capacity-building outcomes of organizational community partnerships by way of a case study of refugee agricultural projects that were partially funded from 2010-2013 by the Federal Refugee Agricultural Partnership Program (RAPP) grant. The results of the study indicate that participation in local partnerships, as well as a network, can enhance organizational capacity which leads to improved provision of services.

Keywords: agriculture, agricultural training, refugee-local community relations

Cataloged by: Peter Nelson/ B. J. Perkins

Negotiations at the interface: An examination of refugee resettlement processes

Title: Negotiations at the interface: An examination of refugee resettlement processes

Author: Barritt, Meghan W.

Date: May 2008

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development and Social Change

This paper examines the processes underpinning refugee resettlement in the United States through a case study of the Resettlement Institute of New England (RINE). The study focuses on a key group of RINE’s employees -brokers -whose role is to mediate between the resettlement agency and different refugee, ethnic and national communities.

Keywords: refugee resettlement

Cataloged by: Peter Nelson/ B. J. Perkins

Refugee education as a tool for integration: A comparative case study of the Worcester community approach to refugee education

Title: Refugee education as a tool for integration: A comparative case study of the Worcester community approach to refugee education

Author: Palcic, M. Brigid

Date: May 2012

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

This paper compares the approaches to providing education to refugees in Worcester, Massachusetts to those used in three other communities. The author looks at both formal and informal programs and services offered by the city as well as nonprofit organizations. The results highlight the importance of understanding the histories and cultural backgrounds of newly arrived refugees to facilitate their integration and inclusion in the school system most effectively. The study concludes that there is a need for increased collaboration between the city and educational nonprofits to improve the integration of refugees in the city of Worcester.

Keywords: education, resettlement programs

Cataloged by: Peter Nelson/ B. J. Perkins

What are the barriers to and facilitators of Type 2 Diabetes self-management among Vietnamese Americans in Worcester?

Title: What are the barriers to and facilitators of Type 2 Diabetes self-management among Vietnamese Americans in Worcester?

Author: Le, Thuha

Date: 2014

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

This paper focuses on Vietnamese Americans, one of the more at-risk populations in Worcester, Massachusetts for being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes (TTD) to assess their understanding of the disease and of the self-management necessary to treat it. The goal is to find enough information to help health care providers and practitioners better approach the growing problem of TTD within the Vietnamese community. The author explores sociocultural factors that might hinder or facilitate diabetes self-management by conducting semi-structured interviews with individuals diagnosed with TTD and two focus group discussions with non-diabetic individuals with diabetic family members. The findings indicate that all participants were unaware of diabetes, its complications, and its symptoms prior to being diagnosed and that health care providers did not provide enough information. The author concludes that there is a need for health care providers and practitioners to provide culturally sensitive information to assist the Vietnamese community in their diabetes self-management.

Keywords: Vietnamese Americans, Type 2 Diabetes, immigrant health

Cataloged by: Selina Sikder/ B. J. Perkins

A resource failure: Health disparities among immigrant residents in Worcester, MA

Title: A resource failure: Health disparities among immigrant residents in Worcester, MA

Author: Canales, Charise

Date: May 2014

Description: Master’s paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

This paper explores the disparities in health between immigrants and U.S.-born residents living in Worcester, Massachusetts. In the context of the recent health care reforms and with a focus on the link between environment and health, this research identities health disparities between these two groups throughout Worcester. To investigate this phenomenon the author uses a mixed method approach that includes health care canvassing, informal discussions with community health educators and workers, and secondary data. The study finds that the resources are available in Worcester but foreign born residents face more barriers due to a lack of understanding of how to navigate the complex health system and how to approach preventive care and healthy lifestyles in an environment lacking in their normal social supports. The paper concludes that cultural sensitivity initiatives and an emphasis on preventive care are two areas policymakers can address to reduce health disparities in Worcester.

Keywords: immigrant health, health disparities, healthcare reform, health indicators, cultural diversity, health policies

Cataloged by: Selina Sikder/ B. J. Perkins

Highly skilled refugees and professional integration in the US: A critique of the refugee resettlement program and exploration of immigrant aid organizations

Title: Highly skilled refugees and professional integration in the US: A critique of the refugee resettlement program and exploration of immigrant aid organizations

 Author: Kat, Anneke

Date: May 2015

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

The current federal refugee resettlement system prevents highly skilled refugees from utilizing their professional expertise to secure meaningful employment in the United States, thereby trapping them in poverty and wasting valuable resources and talent. This paper reviews the federal refugee resettlement system and profiles organizations outside that formal system that provide employment services to skilled immigrants and refugees. The author used the case study method and conducted five in-depth interviews with organizations that provide employment assistance to develop a comprehensive picture of the types of programs available to skilled immigrants and refugees. One of the organizations is based in Malden, Massachusetts. The paper reveals obstacles faced by organizations that provide workforce development assistance to refugees in four key areas: programming, integration, certification and advocacy.

Keywords: skilled refugees, workforce development, resettlement system, resettlement organizations, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania; New York, employment assistance

Cataloged by: Selina Sikder/ B. J. Perkins

Funding frailties: The Vietnamese refugee experience with bureaucracies in Worcester

Title: Funding frailties: The Vietnamese refugee experience with bureaucracies in Worcester

Author: Taylor, Octavia Victoria

Date: December 1993

Description: Master’s Thesis, Clark University, Department of International Development and Social Change

This study focuses on Vietnamese refugees who arrived in Worcester, MA between 1975 and 1992. The author explores state and federal funding policies, the response of local health and social service agencies in implementing these policies and the effect on the refugees’ adaptation to conditions in the United States. This thesis concludes with a consideration of the future prospects of Vietnamese Americans in Worcester.

Keywords: Vietnamese, refugees, resettlement programs, funding policies, adaptation

Cataloged by: Selina Sikder/ B. J. Perkins

Refugee resettlement: National structure and local inputs that influence Massachusetts’s refugee assistance programs

Title: Refugee resettlement: National structure and local inputs that influence Massachusetts’s refugee assistance programs

 Author: Maineri, Terese-Louise

Date: 2002

Description: Master’s thesis, Clark University, Department of International Development and Social Change

This paper examines the Massachusetts Refugee Resettlement Program by focusing on Lutheran Social Services Refugee and Immigrant Services of Worcester, a nonprofit social service agency which assists refugees with resettlement in Worcester, Massachusetts. The author considers Neo-liberalism, New Institutional Economics and participatory development as they relate to the Massachusetts Refugee Resettlement Program. The study indicates that the participation of refugees in decision-making improves the likelihood that they will achieve self-sufficiency rather than depend on federal aid.

Keywords: refugees, resettlement programs, participatory development, self-sufficiency, Neo-liberalism, New Institutional Economics, Massachusetts

Cataloged by: Selina Sikder/ B. J. Perkins