of Korean Green Card Holders Increases
December 7, 2002
By Kim JinSe
Last year, the number of Koreans who obtained the permanent residence
was 20,742, with 8,959 men and 11,783 women. Among them, 6, 499
immigrants came directly from South Korea and the other 14, 253
are students and business visitors who applied for the green card
while in the U.S.
The Immigration and Naturalization Service announced that the population
of Korean immigrants last year increased by 5,000 more than the
average year. Korean immigrants ranked 13th among other
immigrant populations in 2001.
Many of the new immigrants obtained their green cards by changing
their status. The majority were holding visitors or student
visas. 4,492 non-immigrant visitors, 2,209 foreign students, 2,107
short-term employees and 313 business visitors got the green card
About 9,420 people came with their immediate family (spouses, parents,
children, brothers and sisters) through invitation by citizenship
holders, and 2,029 came through invitation by green card holders.
After 9/11, immigration regulations became more strict. However,
as the number of Korean foreign students is increasing and many
are changing their status to a working visa after graduation, Korean
immigration is increasing. One attorney, practicing immigration
matters for Koreans, pointed out that "Korean foreign students
are seeking to find a sponsor after graduation because of the extremely
competitive job market in Korea. In the U.S., they find it relatively
easy to get a job with high education and professional skills. Once
they find a sponsor, it is easy to obtain a green card after all."
Translated from Korean by JooYeon Lee
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