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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

USCIS Naturalizes First Soldier in Military Pilot Recruiting Program
Nonimmigrant Doctor Joins Army Reserve - Obtains Citizenship

WASHINGTON - U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) today naturalized the first nonimmigrant to enlist in the military under the Defense Department’s Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest (MAVNI) pilot recruiting program.

Dr. Brown* was the first nonimmigrant to sign a contract under the MAVNI program. He enlisted in the Army in April, and in June, he applied to become a naturalized citizen. One month later, he passed his naturalization test and recited the Oath of Allegiance becoming a citizen of the United States.

“This ceremony happened in record time because our military liaison team maintained close coordination with the Army and tracked Dr. Brown’s naturalization packet from the time he applied with our Nebraska Service Center until today,” said Debra Rogers, acting Deputy Associate Director of USCIS’ Domestic Operations Directorate and head of USCIS’ Military Liaison team. “The MAVNI program is vital to the national interest, and as such we are very focused on its success.”

As a medical professional, Dr. Brown was commissioned as a Captain in the Army Medical Corps on July 3, and will serve in the Army for the next six years.

The one-year MAVNI pilot program will allow up to 1,000 non-citizens, who do not have permanent resident status but have been here legally for at least two years, to join the Army if they have the needed medical or foreign language and cultural expertise.

While citizenship is not guaranteed, nonimmigrants who apply under the MAVNI pilot program must undergo the same background checks, security screening and meet all of the general qualifications to become citizens of the United States, as do all other members of the U.S. armed forces who apply for citizenship.

More information on the MAVNI program is available online at www.goarmy.com/info/mavni or in the Defense Department fact sheet: www.defenselink.mil/news/mavni-fact-sheet.pdf.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- * The name "Brown" is a pseudonym used at the request of the army.



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