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Sociology & Anthropology Senior Research Symposium 2022

Poster Session

Austin Halstead

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Challenges in Maintaining Culture, Tradition, and Identity for Immigrants in the United States

This research focuses on how culture, tradition, and identity manifest in our everyday life, especially in a host country with different ethno-cultural backgrounds. I investigated the challenges of preserving cultural diversity while assimilating in a foreign land. For this research to be successful, we focused on one state, Maine. The state of Maine isn’t considered one of the most diverse states in the U.S, but due to its low level of working-age adults, the state government issued laws to ease restrictions on asylum seekers attempting to qualify for welfare benefits, in hopes of revitalizing the entire state’s economy. My initial hypothesis was each individual has unique challenges manifesting their cultures while trying to balance a socio-economic livelihood. I conducted in depth interviews with a group of immigrants in the city of Portland to test this hypothesis.