Toward a Typology of Transnational Communication among Venezuelan Immigrant Youth: Implications for Behavioral Health

Christopher P. Salas-Wright, Michael G. Vaughn, Trenette Clark Goings, Cory L. Cobb, Mariana Cohen, Pablo Montero-Zamora, Rob Eschmann, Rachel John, Patricia Andrade, Kesia Oliveros, José Rodríguez, Milded M. Maldonado-Molina, Seth J. Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We identify subtypes of Venezuelan youth based on patterns of technology-based communication with friends in their receiving (US) and sending (Venezuela) countries and, in turn, examine the behavioral health characteristics among different “subtypes” of youth. Using data from 402 recently-arrived Venezuelan immigrant youth (ages 10–17), latent profile analysis and multinomial regression are employed to examine the relationships between technology-based communication and key outcomes. We identified a four-class solution: [#1] “Daily Contact in US, In Touch with Venezuela” (32%), [#2] “Daily Communication in Both Countries” (19%), [#3] “Weekly Contact: More Voice/Text Than Social Media” (35%), and [#4] “Infrequent Communication with US and Venezuela” (14%). Compared to Class #1, youth in Classes #2 and #3 report elevated depressive symptomatology and more permissive substance use views. Findings suggest that how youth navigate and maintain transnational connections varies substantially, and that technology-based communication is related to key post-migration outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Immigrant and Minority Health
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • Communication
  • Depression
  • Immigrants
  • Smartphones
  • Venezuela

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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