Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 5-6-2022

Faculty Advisor(s)

Dr. Ann Gordon


In recent years there has been increased concern and conversation regarding immigration to the United States, especially illegal immigration across the United States-Mexico border. As a result, anti-immigration sentiments have been on the rise, with fear of immigrants increasing crime, bringing disease, and decreasing employment opportunities as common justifications. Relying on the Chapman Survey of American Fears, a representative national sample of adults and their fears in the United States, this paper studies what exactly drives this fear of immigrants and immigration—whether it’s fear of illegal immigration, white people no longer being the majority, increased crime rates, economic concerns, other reasons, or a combination of any of the above. I expect to find that it is a combination of multiple factors that drives this fear of immigrants and that a sole component cannot be attributed to such a complex question. This research can help explain what drives anti-immigration beliefs and subsequent actions. Especially in light of recent events such as the ones regarding the border wall, police brutality, and hate crimes against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community as a result of COVID-19, these findings regarding anti-immigration may be mirrored in topics concerning race, helping to bring light to what motivates people to harbor enmity to those who differ from them.


Presented at the Spring 2022 Student Scholar Symposium at Chapman University.