Toledo ranked highly in categories relating to immigration support in a recent analysis by the New American Economy Cities Index - “a bipartisan research and advocacy organization fighting for smart federal, state and local immigration policies” - as listed on its website.
America’s 100 largest cities were analyzed and given scores based on different factors, including Government Leadership, Community and Civic Participation. The study is available online at newamericaneconomy.org.
Toledo ranks fourth out of five in Government Leadership, Community and Livability and also received a three out of five in the categories of Civic Participation and Economic Prosperity.
The Government Leadership category is described as a city government engaging and supporting immigrants and the Community ranking is described as a city that consults, supports and collaborates with immigrant organizations and community groups.
Lastly, Livability includes housing, healthcare, education and the quality of life for immigrants.
The lower end of the spectrum - all receiving one out of fives included Job Opportunities, Legal Support and Inclusivity. A two out of five was given in the area of Economic Empowerment.
“Personally, no one helped me to integrate, I feel like I did it by myself,” said, Moussa Kone, a computer science and electrical engineering student - who was born in the Ivory Coast and raised in France. “I took English classes in France which I think helped me, but I have still met great people in Toledo and I love the school. The city is still a welcoming place.”
Toledo’s overall score - combining all of the categories - came in at 2.58.
Some of the Top 10 overall cities included Newark, New Jersey; New York, New York and Detroit, Michigan. Newark, New Jersey came in at number one with an overall score of 4.03.
Sena Damci, a law and social thought student whose family is from Turkey, said that UT’s Toledo Excel program has helped her and her two sisters succeed in their education.
“It has helped my family a lot, both of my sisters did it too, and basically if you meet and maintain certain requirements you receive a full ride to UT and your book expenses [are] covered,” Damci said.
There is an array of student organizations for immigrant students at UT, including the Indian Students’ Cultural Organization, the Vietnamese Student Association and the African People’s Association among others.