National Grant Helps Local Students and Residents with Steps to Become a U.S. Citizen

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Minneapolis Public Schools Adult Education Program (MPS-AE) is thrilled to be part of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Citizenship and Integration Grant Program (USICS).   MPS-AE was awarded the USICS grant in conjunction with Mid-Minnesota Legal Assistance (MMLA) located in Minneapolis.  MMLA serves the legal needs of Legal Permanent Residents in the naturalization mps_3.pngprocess. MPS-AE teachers help with the English speaking, listening, reading, and writing components of the naturalization exam and interview.  Teachers also educate students on the U.S. history and civics portion of the exam and interview. 

According to USCIS Director León Rodríguez, the USICS Citizenship and Integration Grant Program has been a key priority in the
Obama Administration.  The focus of the grant is to move permanent residents from their current status to that of a U.S. citizen in order to participate in a lifetime of elections, and to claim rights and full participation in U.S. society.  There were well over 800,000 naturalizations in the United States last year and the USCIS Citizenship Integration Grant Program assisted some of the new U.S. citizens with the naturalization process. 

The USCIS Citizenship and Integration Grant Program focuses on assisting permanent residents with the naturalization process.  The mps_4.pnggrant especially helps those with lower English skills.  At a meeting of grant recipients last month, Director Rodríguez stated that the legal and educational organizations that are part of the USICS Citizenship and Integration Grant Program represent the “elite” of groups performing such work across the United States.  MPS-AE and MMLA received one of the 46 grants awarded throughout the U.S.

In the first 2-year USCIS Citizenship and Integration Grant Program cycle, MPS-AE served over 200 students in Minneapolis.  The students represented new Americans from over 20 different countries.  The grant also helps permanent residents in Anoka County by collaborating with Metro North Adult Basic Education Program.  In the first 2-year grant, MPS-AE and Metro mps_5.pngNorth ABE served over 250 students on becoming U.S. citizens.

Currently, MPS-AE offers citizenship classes at the main South Campus site (2225 East Lake Street) on Monday and Wednesday evenings and on Saturday mornings.   Please contact MPS-AE (612-668-3800) for future citizenship class information.

The following photographs are from a recent Saturday morning class at South Campus Adult Education Program in Minneapolis, MN. 

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