305 Become Citizens At QCC
Some 305 people, ranging from 19 through 84 years in age and representing 63 nations from Afghanistan to Yugoslavia, pledged allegiance and fidelity to the United States of America and became American citizens at a naturalization ceremony conducted at Queensborough Community College on June 18 in the QCC Theatre.
Six of the new citizens were given special attention at the ceremony. Both the youngest and oldest new citizens, 19-year old Eizak Katri from Syria and 84 year-old Abe Druyan from Latvia, were called up to the stage, as well as two celebrating birthdays on June 18: Martin Carillo from Peru and Gerardo Manalad from the Philippines. Two new citizens who will shortly report for duty in the United States Army, Alesha Adebo Caine Clarke and Jae Ho Kim, were also noted.
Holland native David DeGeus, Queensborough graduate and 2003 valedictorian, played The Star Spangled Banner and America the Beautiful on piano, accompanied by fellow graduate and vocalist Robert Anderson. Anderson’s wife was naturalized last year.
Among those attending the event were City Councilmember John Liu, who urged the new citizens to vote, and Assemblymember Hiram Monserrate. The participants were invited to tour the campus with international student ambassadors. The college is home to more than 12,000 students from 137 different nations.
The ceremony is the fourth hosted by the college, which features a Center for Immigration that provides confidential guidance on citizenship and immigration issues to students, staff and family members. For more information, call 718-631-6044.