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New Citizenship Classes Start In Apopka

US Flag, backlit by the sun, waves on a windy day in NYC. Photo by Flickr user jnn1774; creative commons

A new class of aspiring US citizens will begin learning what it takes to become a citizen this weekend. The Hope Community Center in Apopka has won a $225,000 grant from US Citizenship and Immigration Service covers the cost of paid staff, volunteers and resources to run the citizenship classes.

Hope Community Center is one of four Florida organizations to receive the grant, and the only one in Central Florida. Citizenship coordinator Alejandra Salinas said applicants get legal assistance, learn about civics, and prepare for the test, which includes memorizing the answers to 100 questions.

“So having to memorize those 100 questions, they get pretty good at it if they continuously come to our classes,” she said.

“But it’s the language, that’s where they have the most difficult part, making sure they understand the question and making sure they understand everything the officer is telling them.” 

“Depending on their English and how well they do on a test they take they land on a certain level. So we don’t say no to anyone,” she said.

The Hope Community Center has helped over 1000 permanent residents become citizens. The next round of classes begins this Saturday with an orientation, where a USCIS officer will explain what’s required to become a citizen. Classes run twice a week for three months.


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About Matthew Peddie

Matt Peddie