Friday, August 15, 2008

The Oath Ceremony Part 1: Today's the Day!

The USCIS San Jose office usually interviews one thousand people per month. The Novemeber 2008 Presidential election, combined with the July 2007 USCIS price rise, inspired thousand of permanent residents to apply for citizenship. During Spring and Summer 2008, the San Jose office was interviewing close to 3500 people per month!

By mid-August 2008, so many people have passed their Citizenship interviews, that the USCIS arranged to hold the Oath Ceremony at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds (a very large and convient location), instead of the smaller Campbell Heritage Theater.

Today's goal: US Citizenship for over 5000 people in morning and afternoon ceremony---WELCOME!

The ceremony was scheduled to begin at 10:30am. Because there was such a HUGE traffic jam before the previous ceremony, I decided to arrive at 8am. I easily found the "Citizen-to-be" line and followed to the beginning. who was in front of the line? Mr and Mrs Nakrani--they got there at 6:30am!

I followed the "Citizen-to-be" line to the end and found two more students, Xaiken and Thai, with their son.

As we waited, Hoanh and her husband came. She passed her interview over 30 months ago and FINALLY got her letter for the Oath Ceremony.

No sooner than saying "Hello!" a USCIS representative came by and checked the Citizens-to-be Oath Ceremony letter and paperwork.

The USCIS representative directed us "guests" to another line. Good-bye Citizens-to-be, Hello New Citizens!

To be continued...

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