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Contact: Kathy Steichen, 360-569-6510
Mount Rainier National Park was honored to host a naturalization ceremony at Paradise for seventeen military members who became United States citizens on Wednesday, August 15, 2018. The service members came from twelve countries and represented the Army (14) and the Army National Guard (3). With Mount Rainier and its subalpine wildflower meadows as the backdrop, the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) Seattle District Director, Anne Corsano, swore in the new citizens.
The keynote speaker for the ceremony was Tracy Swartout, Mount Rainier National Park Deputy Superintendent. She shared, "Now that you’re gaining ownership of the national parks, I charge you with getting to know them. If you look, you’re going to find stories that are somehow connected to your own story. As a start, your story is now forever intertwined with the National Park Service here at Mount Rainier National Park. Only a few dozen people have taken their oaths of citizenship here, on this spot and you are now part of that small group. Also as one of the first five national parks in the United States, Mount Rainier represents nearly the complete 102 year history of the National Park Service as an idea; so I encourage you and your families to always view Mount Rainier, and in fact every other national park site in the country, as your place."
Working in partnership since 2006, the National Park Service and USCIS have introduced new citizens to some of the nation’s most significant natural resources and cultural heritage sites. These historic and picturesque sites provide an ideal backdrop for new citizens to learn about and reflect on the American identity and the responsibilities of citizenship.
Naturalization is the process by which U.S. citizenship is conferred upon foreign citizens or nationals after fulfilling the requirements established by Congress. After naturalization, foreign-born citizens enjoy nearly all the same benefits, rights and responsibilities that the Constitution gives to native-born U.S. citizens, including the right to vote. During fiscal year 2017, more than 719,000 people became U.S. citizens.
USCIS encourages new citizens and guests to share their naturalization ceremony experiences and photos through social media using the hashtag #newUScitizen. A short video on the recent ceremony at Mount Rainier National Park can be found at: https://youtu.be/
Last updated: August 20, 2018