B3: What Terms Are Helpful for Me to Know?

Throughout the training program, you will encounter several terms specific to culture and immigration. The following list explains the terms and defines them as they are used in the program.  The terms are listed alphabetically.


Asylee: An asylee in the United States is someone from another country who cannot safely return to his or her country because of a fear of persecution there.

Culture:  For our purposes, culture includes the attitudes, beliefs, and values that a group of people share.

Cross-cultural:  Comparing two or more different cultures. For example, a CN who works with someone from another culture is having a cross-cultural experience.

Discrimination: The unfair and unequal treatment of people based on their race, color, religion, sex, or other characteristic. 

Diversity:  Diversity refers to observable differences between people. These differences can include race, first language, ethnic heritage, gender, income, education, age, religious beliefs – the list goes on. In this training program, diversity most often refers to people coming together from different cultures and/or countries.

Documented: In the United States, someone who has a visa or other legal documentation that grants him or her the legal right to be in the country.

Immigrant:  Someone from another country who is legally allowed to live in the United States permanently and without restrictions.

Legal Permanent Resident: This term, often abbreviated to LPR, refers to a legal immigrant, or green card holder. An LPR can cross U.S. borders legally and often, but an LPR who leaves the United States for more than a year must obtain a new visa or document to re-enter the country.[1]

Migrant:  A migrant is someone who moves from one place to another for temporary work. The term often refers to seasonal workers (e.g., fruit pickers).

Newcomer:  Someone from another country who is living in the United States. In this training program, a newcomer is someone who came to the United States within the last 2 years and currently lives in the Hartford area.

Nonimmigrant Visas:  By law, someone who comes to the United States from another country must arrive with a visa. This legal documentation allows the person to stay in the United States for a certain amount of time (a few weeks, a few months, a few years, etc,). What the person is allowed to do while in the U.S. depends on the visa. A nonimmigrant visa is for people who are coming to the United States for a temporary stay for travel, business, study, work, or some other specific purpose. Once a visa has been used, it often cannot be used for a return trip to the United States.

Refugee: Someone who is unable or unwilling to return to his or her country of origin due to a fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, social group membership, or political opinion. The main difference between an asylee and a refugee in the United States is that an asylee is already on U.S. soil when seeking asylum, while a refugees is outside the U.S. when applying for refugee status.

Undocumented: In the United States, this term (often used in the phrase undocumented immigrant) refers to someone who does not hold a legal permit to be in the country. This means the person entered the country illegally, or entered legally with a visa but overstayed the visa. The CN project only assigns CNs to work with documented newcomers. However, CNs may come across undocumented immigrants in their work with newcomers. Although undocumented immigrant is the term that is preferred today, other terms are used. These include undocumented migrantunauthorized immigrantunauthorized migrantillegal immigrant, and illegal alien, among others.

Everyone in the United States, regardless of status, is afforded basic human rights. However, those who are in the United States legally are afforded additional rights that those who are undocumented do not receive. These additional rights will be discussed further in the online training program.

Last modified: Friday, 23 January 2015, 03:56 PM
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