Originally from Sierra Leone, Amin Skaikay came to the United States at the age of fourteen. While his mom became a citizen years ago, Amin had to pursue the naturalization process on his own, when he was much older. Amin saw citizenship as giving him the ability to further his education and pursue a better career. He says, “Being a U.S. citizen means a lot because it gives me the opportunity to vote and participate in community.”
Amin first heard about the New American Workforce program through his mom who encouraged him to seize every opportunity and apply for citizenship. Amin remarks how, “Mayor Bowser’s DC Citizenship Fund was that opportunity and I didn’t want to miss my chance again; I just went for it.” Amin did not encounter any obstacles while completing his application. He says, “Over the last ten years, I worked very hard to not get in trouble and followed the rules in America, so that I could earn it [citizenship]. I did not go out and do crazy things, I cared for my life and future and was determined to stay positive and do my best.”
With the help of the citizenship workshops provided by the New American Workforce, Amin is now waiting for his oath ceremony. He says how, “The citizenship workshops were a great opportunity that the DC Government provided because they gave us the chance and guidance to become U.S. citizens, it was a great experience.” With the help of this program in furthering his own career, Amin gladly encourages other green card holders to participate, recognizing that it can be a very difficult and long process.
After his oath ceremony, Amin says he will “Set some new goals for myself, to see what I can accomplish in these next ten years. At least I can start by voting and exploring opportunities to better my future.”