For Mohammad Haydari, the journey to U.S. citizenship has been a long one. In 2008, he moved his family to the United States from Iran. Haydari returned to his home country for work in order to send money back to his family in the States. In 2017, he was able to return to the U.S. to live permanently.
In 2015 his wife, Effat, gained her citizenship, and now Haydari was on the path to gain his. He began taking English classes at CHRISTUS Learning Center with ESL instructor Norma Vargas. “When I came here, I didn’t know any English,” he said. “Ms. Norma is one of the best teachers. She is very kind and patient.”
Haydari then began Citizenship classes with Learning Center instructor Yolanda Hunt. For three months, she worked with him on his reading and learning the history of US. “She worked with me on the questions for the citizenship test,” Haydari said. “She would start with the easy questions and then give me harder questions. She is a very professional teacher.”
Last March, Haydari was ready to take the test when åwas canceled,” he said. “The second time I was scheduled to take the test, we had the hurricane. The third time I was scheduled, I was finally able to take my test.”
Due to social distancing measures, Haydari’s citizenship ceremony was very small with a total of 50 people taking the oath. “That day was very happy for me,” he said. “It took me more than 13 years to finally become a citizen.”
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