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JORGE QUERO'S NATURALIZATION CEREMONY

by Aidan Wyrough (9)

The air was cheery and energetic as everyone was ready to see their track coach Jorge Quero become a citizen of the United States of America. There was a small crowd of friends, family, and former and current athletes. On the stage, an American flag stood proudly alongside the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Throughout the crowd, attendees waved US flags, and many students and athletes spoke with their beloved coach before the beginning of the event.

         Everyone began to settle down as the principal, Mr. Bull, took the stage and laid out an overview of what Coach Jorge has done for the community. A representative from USCIS took the stage and gave a brief overview of the steps to administering lawful immigration. She explained the three components to the immigration branch of government and that USCIS was the part which would be making Jorge a citizen. 

         A person can choose to remain a permanent resident for their entire life. Once they have lived on US soil for five years, they are eligible to become a citizen. To naturalize, one must be 18 years or older and have shown good moral conduct. Coach Jorge met both of these criteria; he was a permanent resident in the US and a Mexican citizen by birth who had adhered to the aforementioned rules.

 

         In most ceremonies, the administrators list all of the countries of origin of people being naturalized but since this event was only for Coach Jorge, they did a special dedication to his country of origin, Mexico, and what influence it has had on our country. After this was given, Jorge stood, placed his right hand on his heart, repeated the words the speaker said, and officially became a citizen.

         Speakers gave anecdotal speeches to honor the influence of Coach Jorge, and an athlete who could not attend the event wrote a letter to be read out for Coach Jorge. Another former runner came up and gave an account of her first experience with Jorge. She shared many accounts of times when Coach Jorge had helped her, both on and off the track. Evidently, Coach Jorge had had a profound effect on the lives of his athletes numerous times. He had pushed his athletes to do their best and helped them improve their running as well as their conduct in life.

         After another runner gave a final speech, USCIS made a special statement welcoming Coach Jorge to the country. Coach Jorge then received his certificate of citizenship as the audience erupted in applause. The Foothill High School track coach had completed the final step in his journey to becoming an American.