|dc.description.abstract||Young people with immigrant backgrounds follow different paths to acculturate. Some integrate into the new society so that they cannot be singled out from the majority; others maintain their ethnic culture in addition to adopting values of the larger society. Alternatively, some immigrant youth distance themselves from both their parents' culture and new one. The challenge for second generation immigrants is that they have to make a double transition to adulthood. Immigrant adolescents develop an identity as members of their own group, and to varying degrees, as members of the lager society. Because of the variety of influences and opportunities they face in making choices on these issues, immigrant adolescents take many different development pathways toward adulthood in a new society. Many second-generation immigrants feel a part neither of the country of their birth, nor of their parents' heritage. Their rootlessness is compounded by economic struggle. The purpose of this study is to understand the narratives and worldviews of these young adults, as well as the kind of choices that adolescents make during their acculturation.
There were 24 students of immigrant background in the study: 13 women and 11 men. 17 of the subjects had been refugees. The primary questions asked by the study were: a) how did the students identify themselves and where did they want to belong b) who was part of their social network (family, important others, peers etc.), and c) which official and unofficial institutions did they attend to (school, recreation, different organizations.). The research method can be described as a narrative one, were the attention is on narrations as transmitters and creators of reality.
In conclusion, most of the students in the study showed integration or ethnic profile, where the integration profile is the most adaptive. Both the profiles are associated with a good psychological adaptation. The students reported that although bicultural or multicultural identity was difficult to live with, it was also a source of empowerment. Perceived discrimination was reported to have an effect on students' acculturation process. Many of the students had good memories of their teachers and of school in general. Even though students had seemingly well adjusted themselves into a new society, many of them considered leaving Finland after finishing their education.||en