The United States remains a popular destination for immigrants from Africa, according to the U.S.-based Pew Research Center.

    The number of African immigrants coming to the U.S. has more than doubled since 2000, Pew said in a new report.

    The organization said that as of 2015, 2.1 million African-born people were living in the United States. That number is up from 880,000 in 2000. Back in 1970, there were just 80,000.

    Monica Anderson is a research associate at Pew and the author of the study. She said one reason for the large increase is that many immigrants are refugees from Africa.
    莫妮卡·安德森(Monica Anderson)是皮尤研究中心的一名研究员,也是这项研究的作者。她说,这一数字大幅增长的原因之一就是很多移民都是来自非洲的难民。

    She noted that in 1980, only 1 percent of refugees admitted to the United States were from Africa. Today, that share is about 37 percent.

    "That is one major factor that is driving the growth of African immigrants, but it doesn't tell the entire story," Anderson told VOA in an interview.

    She said that over the years, certain U.S. areas have developed large, established populations for African immigrants.

    One of those is the Midwestern state of Minnesota. The state is home to about 25,000 people of Somali origin. This is about one-fifth of the whole foreign-born population of the state.

    "In different clusters in the U.S., African immigrants are really reshaping the immigrant population there," Anderson said.

    Another example is the neighboring state of South Dakota, which has large refugee communities from Sudan, Somalia and Ethiopia. Overall, Africans make up about 15 percent of South Dakota's foreign-born population, according to Pew.

    The top states where African immigrants live are Texas, New York, California and Maryland.

    African immigrants in the U.S. include tens of thousands of refugees from Somalia, Sudan, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Eritrea, Pew said. But it also includes highly-educated doctors, engineers and others seeking a better life in America.

    Randy Capps is the director of research for U.S. programs at the Migration Policy Institute. He said that as of 2013, 38 percent of sub-Saharan African immigrants had a bachelor's degree or higher, compared to 28 percent of all U.S. immigrants.
    蓝迪·卡普斯(Randy Capps)是美国移民政策研究所美国项目的研究主任。他说,截至2013年,38%的撒哈拉以南非洲移民拥有学士学位或更高学历,相比之下,在所有美国移民中,这一比例为28%。

    But despite the increases, Africans still make up a relatively small amount of the total U.S. immigrant population. Capps said there are both historical and geographic reasons for this.

    "It's a long distance from Africa, and the number of people in Africa with sufficient incomes to migrate that far has been relatively small," he said.

    He added that the path for legal African migration to the U.S. was not fully opened until the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act.

    The act, signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson, removed immigration quota systems based on national identity. This allowed for immigrants of all nationalities to be accepted equally. The act also made it easier for skilled immigrants to migrate to the United States.
    该法案由林登·约翰逊(Lyndon Johnson)总统签署成为法律,它取消了基于民族面貌的移民配额制度。这使得所有民族的移民得到了平等待遇。该法案也使技术移民到美国更为容易。

    I'm Bryan Lynn.