Like most places in America, the history of Ohio has been driven by immigrants. In fact, during the early 1800’s, the population of Ohio exploded due to the amount of immigrants that were arriving to the city. Of course the number of immigrants to the city nowadays has slowed down, however, there is still a large amount of people coming to the city from overseas to start a new life.
Early immigrants came from before the American Revolution, the majority of these were from England, Germany and Ireland. Before then 1900’s, the majority of the people that were born in the city came from Western Europe. However, as time went on, more and more people started coming from Eastern European Countries, many of them establishing their own communities within Ohio.
At the time of writing, there are over 390,000 people who now live in Ohio who were born outside of the United States. As the years go by, an increasing number of people heading to the United States through emigration are choosing Ohio as their place to live. The majority of these residents at the moment, 190,000 in fact, come from Asian countries. Around 45,000 people have also settled as a result of being refugees of the Somali War in the 1990’s. Ohio has probably the largest concentration of people from Somalia than anywhere else in the United States.
The largest group of immigrants in Ohio however are the Spanish-Speakers. In the 2010 census there were 350,000 Latino residents, which was a 40% increase from the year 2000. The Spanish speaking residents are often found in the larger cities within Ohio such as Cleveland, Columbus, Akron, and Cincinnati.
The immigrants that head to the state however are looking to give back something to the community. Over 77% of people born outside of Ohio have a High School Diploma, whilst 38% have a bachelor’s degree. This means that the people entering the state are very ‘well educated’ and can be found in a number of different professional positions, such as medical professionals and engineers. However, in order to reach the upper echelons of these positions, these people have had to go through a lot of training in order to increase their communication skills. This can happen through accent modification, which simply put, attempts to eliminate the presence of non-English sounds when people speak English. This is important, because if you learn a new language the pronunciation of your original language will always affect the way you speak your new language.
If you are an immigrant in Ohio who is looking to better ‘blend’ with the community, whether in a social capacity or a work capacity then it would be recommendable if you enrolled in an accent reduction course, which is incredibly important if you want to feel even more a part of where you live.