Master of Philosophy in Organizational Dynamics Theses

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Submitted to the Program of Organizational Dynamics, College of Liberal and Professional Studies in the School of Arts and Sciences in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Philosophy in Organizational Dynamics at the University of Pennsylvania

Advisor: Kimberly Torres


There are more than 3.8 million black immigrants in the USA that represent 8.7% of the USA’s black population (Anderson & Lopez, 2018). Among these immigrants are African immigrants. The purpose of this research is to conduct a preliminary exploratory study on what the African immigrants experience (specifically, Anglophone African immigrants) is at the workplace - a demographic that has been historically understudied in the social science literature. In order to understand how African immigrant professionals adjust to their newfound reality, a historical overview of African immigration to the United States shall be provided. Subsequently, a secondary analysis of various sources provides insights on the potential barriers that exist as well as the opportunities that enable African immigrant professionals to thrive.

An understanding of interpersonal workings that African immigrant professionals have within the organizations yields an in-depth understanding of how African immigrants fit the new organizational culture that they find themselves in. Furthermore, it also enables scholars and practitioners to apprehend how and why the outcomes for African immigrants are not the same, as compared with other demographics. Last but not least, this paper explores the African immigrant professional’s contribution to society. Knowledge of this is juxtaposed with the current immigration laws and policies that can potentially inhibit the cross-sector benefits that African immigrants bring to the USA. In this capstone research paper, first-generation and second-generation of immigrants are studied. The first-generation of immigrants refers to the first group of immigrants that come to the United States or individuals that come to the United States in their early teens. On the other hand, the second-generation of immigrants refers to the children or grandchildren of such immigrants. (Thomas, 2014).


immigration and education, immigration, education, workplace, african, immigrant, organizational culture



Date Posted: 28 May 2020