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Becoming an American citizen

Immigration is a hot-button topic especially during the presidential administration - and the path to becoming an American citizen is far from easy. The public got the chance to learn more about what it takes to become a citizen at the Rochester Public Library.

Posted: Sep 19, 2019 1:55 PM

ROCHESTER, Minn. - 

It is a big deal to become an American citizen - one has to work very hard. You have to stay in the country for a few years as an immigrant, file an application, do an interview and take a civics test before finally taking the oath. For Joy Hove, she faced a lot of barriers after she immigrated to the United States from the Philippines as a conditional resident. 

"It becomes emotional because after 4 months my husband passed away," Hove said. "This is the father of my children so I was left in the country with two children." 

After Hove's husband died, she had to figure out a way to make a life for herself. 

"I was not working at the time, I did not know how to drive," Hove said. "I gained my strength to be in the U.S. to be able to pursue the dream that I want my children to have." 

But she persevered - becoming a citizen in November 2006. Now she serves as a Supervising Immigration Services Officer in Minneapolis. 

"It completely changed my life because people must be able to understand the benefit and opportunity of becoming a U.S. citizen, I don't take that for granted," Hove said. 

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