Using surveys of second generation immigrant adults in New York and Los Angeles, Origins and Destinations explains why second generation experiences differ across national origin groups and why immigrant offspring with the same national background often follow different trajectories. Intergroup disparities stem from contexts of both emigration and immigration. Origin countries differ in value orientations: immigrant parents transmit lessons learned in varying contexts of emigration to children raised in the U.S. A system of migration control sifts immigrants by legal status, generating a context of immigration that favors some groups over others. Both contexts matter: schooling is higher among immigrant children from more secular societies (South Korea) than among those from more religious countries (the Philippines). When immigrant groups enter the U.S. migration system through a welcoming door, as opposed to one that makes authorized status difficult to achieve, education propels immigrant children to better jobs.