Citizenship Mentoring

Citizenship Mentoring

Citizenship Mentoring Report - Nov/Dec 2020 | Citizenship Mentoring Report - October 2020Citizen Mentoring Report - September 2020Raising Costs to Become Citizen?

Citizenship Mentoring Overview

Citizenship Mentoring is non-partisan and aims to assist eligible permanent residents prepare for US Citizenship. Citizens participate in the democratic process by exercising their right to vote; only citizens can vote in federal, New York State, and local elections. The League of Women Voters believes in promoting the democratic process. PDF iconRead More...
Citizenship Mentoring does not have outside sources of income; these classes are solely funded by the Schenectady County LWV. Thanks to the Schenectady County Public Library system, we were able to obtain the use of a room at the Bornt Library, 948 State Street. This location is easily accessible for anyone interested in taking advantage of our classes which will focus on helping eligible residents prepare for the naturalization interview and test.

If you are interested in learning more about citizenship through naturalization, there are ample resources and information on the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website:. There is even a sample USCIS Naturalization and Test Video which explains the process.

Back to Top

Citizenship Mentoring Group Report - Nov/Dec 2020

November is normally the time when I prepare a final grant report for our LWV New Citizens Voter Registration Grant. However, we were only able to attend two naturalization ceremonies before the twelve remaining ceremonies were either cancelled or closed to the public due to COVID-19. I was delighted to learn this week that our grant has been extended until June 2021, and all grant funds may continue be used. Thank you, LWV!

Ann Hatke

Back To Top

Citizenship Mentoring Report – October 2020

A “drive-in” naturalization was held on September 25 in one of SCCC’s parking lots. Applicants stayed in their cars, with masks, and then stepped out to take the Oath of Allegiance, say the Pledge of Allegiance, and listen to the Star-Spangled Banner. It was a beautiful morning, with a backdrop of trees in full Fall colors.  Forty-three new citizens were naturalized, including four of our Citizenship Mentoring students.  It was especially moving as all four of the students were in the last class session before the shut-down in March.  We’re counting down the days until we can be up and running once again!

Ann Hatke

Back To Top

Citizenship Mentoring Report - September 2020

Although we haven’t been able to resume our regular citizenship classes or tutoring yet, our students have been busy. Immigration Services has been shut down since March, but were able to re-open their offices in a limited way during June and resumed citizenship interviews. This summer, we had three of our students – from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Yemen, and Afghanistan – become new US citizens. And they’ll be in time to vote in this election!

For more information about the Citizenship Mentoring Group, please contact Ann Hatke at hatkeann [at] (.)

Back to Top


Raising Costs to Become Citizen?

Becoming a U.S. citizen may get a lot more expensive, and groups are urging legal permanent residents to apply as soon as possible.

The U.S. Administration wants to increase the cost of citizenship applications by 83 percent for roughly 9 million immigrants eligible to become U.S. citizens.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at the Department of Homeland Security officially announced the proposed price hike Thursday, saying that "current fees do not recover the full costs of providing adjudication and naturalization services."

The citizenship application fee would go from $640 to $1,170 and fees associated with legal permanent residency will go up 79 percent -- from $1,220 to $2,195.

Advocates like Angelica Salas, executive director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights, or CHIRLA, see the Administration's proposal as "a targeted and brazen attack especially on those who are poor and vulnerable" because it seeks to price out immigrants "of their rightful place in our communities and in America."

The proposed rule also outlines a series of other kinds of fee increases that impact immigration- related applications for asylum-seekers, Temporary Protected Status beneficiaries, DACA recipients and legal permanent residents.

DACA renewals would increase from $495 to $765, possibly giving Administration officials a tool to limit the program in case the Supreme Court allows the program to continue despite the administration's efforts to end it.

The Administration is also seeking to transfer $207.6 million of USCIS funding and divert it to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

By Nicole Acevedo,
staff reporter at NBC News Digital where she reports, writes and produces content for NBC Latino and

Nov. 14, 2019, 3:05 PM EST

Back to Top