When faced with a host environment, immigrants must decipher the systems of their new community much like their translation of their new language. The incumbent policies and procedures for participating in a host community require a social adaptation on behalf of the immigrants. Therefore, the degree to which immigrants use community-sponsored systems can be an indicator for their level of communal assimilation. Understanding and employing community systems is what allows immigrants to build social capital, and establish a sense of residency even if actual citizenship is not attained. The learning curve associated with assimilating to community systems is specific to each immigrant enclave. For the Nicaraguan immigrants, especially of Miami, their rate of "system" conversion is affected by their pre-conceived influences, their community's cultural competency, and overall legal restrictions. The progress of Nicaraguan acculturation can hypothetically be ascertained from their involvement in the education, medical, and governmental systems of their host environment.
[...] The pre-existing mental frameworks, level of community cultural competency, and legal restrictions Nicaraguan immigrants face determine the rate and success of their acculturation process. Their involvement in community- based systems helps define their ethnic identity in relation to their host environment, and aids Nicaraguan immigrants in the further development of their social capital. Education, health, and government services all represent an entry for Nicaraguan immigrants into their host community, and foster a route towards upward assimilation mobility. The acculturation of Nicaraguan immigrants, best represented in Miami, is a product of their level of utilization of community-based systems, and the perceptual, cultural, and legal issues that influence their community involvement potential. [...]
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[...] Upon arrival in their host space, Nicaraguan immigrants tend to first view government services as responding to robbery, fires, and garbage collection Yet Nicaraguans show a clear correlation between need for government services and their length of time in the United States A recent survey of Nicaraguan immigrants showed that for their future plans (within the next five years) planned to learn English planned to bring more family into the United States, and 58% planned to become US citizens The relationship between length of residence and quality of residence suggest that as immigrants begin to rely on government services such as education, health, and overall community resources, they become increasingly more effective at participating in their host community. [...]
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