Madras Begins 2020 As a US Citizen
Nearly 24 years after arriving in the US from India, Navin Madras took the oath that made him an American citizen. On January 8, 2020, the ECTC Program Coordinator for Computer Information Technology stood with 75 other proud immigrants from 23 countries to declare his allegiance to his adopted home.
Navin entered the US in 1996 on a student visa in Pittsburg, Kansas, moved to Milwaukee where he earned an MBA specializing in information technology, followed by an MS in Computer Science, taught at the University of Wisconsin and began to consider US citizenship. His search for a tenured position led him to ECTC in 2007, where he began the long and tedious road to citizenship.
“After six years on an H1-B worker visa, I was able to begin to apply for a Green Card in February 2008,” he explained. “That process took until November 2013, due to the multiple steps and limited number of green cards available for each country. Then I waited another five years to be eligible to apply for citizenship.”
After that, the pace picked up. After undergoing biometric screening like fingerprinting, Navin was given study materials of 100 questions for the verbal naturalization exam that included history, civics, and geography. Reading and writing exams tested his mastery of the English language.
Late in December he received the news he’d been waiting for…he had passed all tests and was scheduled to take the oath of citizenship on the morning of January 8, 2020.
“It was a joyous celebration! Now I could finally register to vote!”