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September 15, 2008
By Natalie Savidge
The University of Nevada, Reno will host the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) naturalization ceremony in the recently opened Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center Auditorium on Wednesday, September 17 at 11 a.m.
The USCIS annual naturalization ceremony welcomes 41 Reno-area residents from 23 countries as new U.S. citizens.
“We are honored to be invited to hold this event in an institution of higher learning, and to do so on Constitution Day is especially exciting,” said Reno’s USCIS Field Office Director Monica Toro. “On this day when American citizens express pride in their citizenship and honor the Constitution, this educational venue reminds us of the efforts made by these newest U.S. citizens to learn about their new country and our famous piece of legislation – the Constitution.”
Nathalie Le Galloudec, a University assistant research professor of physics naturalized in September 2007, will welcome the new U.S. citizens and Toro will administer the Oath of Allegiance.
The 41 citizenship candidates hail from 23 countries: Australia, Bolivia, China, Czechoslovakia, El Salvador, Fiji, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Jordan, Lebanon, Lithuania, Mexico, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Russia, Syria, Taiwan, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and Vietnam. In FY2007, USCIS welcomed almost 700,000 citizens during naturalization ceremonies across the United States, including 1,516 in Reno, an annual total surpassed by the local office in June of this year.
The Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center opened just last month on the University campus. The Knowledge Center combines the best of traditional library resources with new digital and multimedia technologies. This pioneering information environment is designed to nurture creativity and stimulate intellectual inquiry.
Constitution Day is one of the newest federal holidays to be established by Congress, passed in 2004. However, its roots stretch back to 1940 and “I am an American Day.” Constitution Day, also called Citizenship Day, is celebrated to mark the anniversary of the ratification of the U.S. Constitution. The Act that passed the holiday also requires federally funded schools to provide lessons on the U.S. Constitution during the holiday.