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In the 1970s and 1980s, Filipinos in New York and New Jersey had a higher socioeconomic status than Filipinos elsewhere, as more than half of Filipino immigrants to the metropolitan area were healthcare professionals or other highly trained professionals, in contrast to established working-class Filipino American populations elsewhere.
In 1970, the New York metropolitan area had the largest concentration of Filipinos (12,455) east of the Rocky Mountains, and fifth largest population of Filipinos of all metropolitan areas in the United States.
These students were chosen from wealthy and elite Filipino families initially, but were later from a more diverse background; additionally other Filipino students came to the United States for education outside of the program, many of whom did not return to the Philippines.
A significant portion of these immigrants were in the medical field, due to medical personnel shortages in the United State such as in nursing, making the Philippines become the largest source of healthcare professionals to the United States. Navy ended the Philippines Enlistment Program due to the end of the 1947 Military Bases Agreement; the program allowed about thirty-five thousand Filipinos to join the U. Navy, many of whom immigrated to the United States.
Since 1965, due to changes in immigration policy, the population of Filipino Americans expanded significantly.
Filipino Americans can be found throughout the United States, especially in the Western United States and metropolitan areas.
Filipino Americans constitute the second-largest population of Asian Americans, and the largest population of Overseas Filipinos.
The first recorded presence of Filipinos in what is now the United States dates to October 1587, with the first permanent settlement of Filipinos in what is now the United States being established in Louisiana in 1763.
Historic Filipinotown is now largely populated by Hispanic and Latino Americans with most Filipinos who once resided in the area and the city in general having moved to the suburbs, One of the earliest records of a Filipino settling in the San Francisco Bay Area occurred in the mid-19th Century, when a Filipino immigrant and his Miwok wife settled in Lairds Landing on Marin County coast; Additionally, other immigrants came through the U. Military, some through the Presidio of San Francisco, and others as migrant workers on their way to points inland; many of these Filipinos would permanently settle down in the Bay Area, establishing "Manilatown" on Kearny Street (next to Chinatown).Following the annexation of the Philippines, Filipinos began to migrate to Texas due primarily as employees of American officers who served in the Philippines, with many settling around San Antonio; others would resettle in Texas after initially residing elsewhere in the United States.In 1970, Filipino Americans were the fifth largest minority population, with 11,462 persons, after African-Americans, Hispanic and Latino Americans, Native Americans, and Japanese Americans; they were 0.3 percent of the total population of Washington at the time, and 87.2 percent lived in urban areas.In California, Filipinos were initially concentrated in its Central Valley, especially in Stockton, but later shifted to Southern California and the San Francisco Bay Area.Other states with significant populations of Filipinos include Hawaii, Illinois, Texas, and Washington.