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I Got Approved to Become a U.S. Citizen. Would you?

On December 18, 2005, my plane landed at Dulles International Airport.

On February 23, 2011, I became a U.S. Citizen.

When we moved to this country, it was because my parents wanted me and my brother to have better opportunities for education.  They wanted us to succeed and my dad worked 18 hour days to make sure that we had everything we needed. A roof over our heads, food on our table and the ability to go after the opportunities as we choose. For me, at first, it was law school. And then, I decided to move forward with Journalism.

Because of our move to the U.S., I was able to choose my own path, make my own mistakes and redefine the path as I needed.

Ironically, as much as we wanted to get our U.S. Citizenship a few years ago, the application fee was the only thing that delayed the process.

It was this past year when my dad and I decided we would save up, and send in our application to become U.S. Citizens after being greencard-holders over the past decade.

We were fortunate enough to have our interview on the same day, though our Oath ceremonies were a couple of hours apart.

The actual day was long and grueling, simply because of the wait for our interviews & the ceremony once we were approved.  Once our interview was over, we were given an envelope & told to go to the waiting room for the ceremony.

In our envelope:

During the Oath ceremony, the officers conducting the ceremony first reviewed the rules, and then asked us to stand up as our country of birth was called.  Once we were all standing, we represented the ‘many’, and after the ceremony was over, we were all ‘one’ as U.S. Citizens.

Following the pledges (First the Oath of Citizenship & then the Pledge of Allegiance), we stood for the national anthem, followed by a message from President Obama.

I may have shed a tear or two. Turkey will always be home to me and I am very proud to be a Turkish-American.

The final step was actually receiving my Certificate of Naturalization.

Oh hai, I'm a Citizen

If you had to take the U.S. Citizenship test today, could you pass? Take the quiz to find out.  Remember that you have to get 6 out of 10 correct, and it is not multiple choice during the actual interview.


If you are in DC, come celebrate my Citizenship/Birfday with me on March 26!

{ 50 comments… add one }
  • Suburban Sweetheart March 2, 2011, 9:00 pm

    Wow. I had no idea South Carolina & Georgia were part of the original colonies. I’m ashamed.

  • Allison Blass March 2, 2011, 9:08 pm

    Wow. 5 out of 10? I suck. Though, I almost said Woodrow Wilson, but changed it to Coolidge. Need to go with my gut… Good job you!

  • Marie March 2, 2011, 9:25 pm

    Congratulations! And that test is hard!

    • Berrak March 3, 2011, 1:54 am

      Haha, right? And those are only some of the questions out of a possible 100!

      And thanks!

  • Mindy March 2, 2011, 9:25 pm

    Well, I wouldn’t be a citizen at four questions correct… Ha. Congrats again hun!

  • Grace Cunningham March 2, 2011, 9:28 pm

    Yay AP US History and College Poli Sci – 9/10, missed the number of amendments by 1. Thanks for posting the quiz and your experience! And congratulations on your citizenship

  • elizabeth March 2, 2011, 9:37 pm

    6 of 10 – I am so ashamed of myself but thoroughly inspired by you – your story really touched me because I am so proud to be an American :))

  • eemusings March 2, 2011, 10:49 pm

    Congrats! Where are you originally from?

    I became an NZ citizen at the age of 12 (13?), about five years after we moved here. But there is no citizenship test, only the requirement that you have lived here a certain length of time.

  • magnolia March 2, 2011, 11:20 pm

    oh, with all my years of american history training and law school, i botched the constitution questions. sigh…

    congratulations on this. it’s a huge thing to do. i’ve always been partial to the loud, messy conglomeration that is the u-s-of-a. i mean, i’m biased and all, being born and bred here, but i wouldn’t have it any other way, i think.

  • Stephany March 3, 2011, 1:18 am

    Oh, my. I’m not even going to say how “well” I did on the quiz. I just know I wouldn’t be a citizen. 😉

    Congratulations again! What an amazing day!

  • SillyJaime March 3, 2011, 2:05 am

    I failed. Good thing I was born here.

    Now I feel the need to read up.

    Congrats, darling. <3

    • Berrak March 3, 2011, 1:59 pm

      The ironic thing is that I’m currently studying American History in school 🙂 <3

      • SillyJaime March 3, 2011, 6:16 pm

        I absolutely LOVE history… and if I were to go to school I would take all the offered history classes. Unfortunately, I do not go to school nor will I for at least a few years if I even go at all. But rest assured… if I do, I’ll be taking history to the max!

  • Alana (aka Pecan) March 3, 2011, 4:36 am

    I missed two. I chose John Roberts first and then second guessed myself and picked Thomas. Duh. First rule of multiple choice. I like essay.

  • Storm. Katrina Storm. March 3, 2011, 5:08 am

    I can tell you right now, I wouldn’t pass… but if I knew I had to take the test, and studied, I probably would… I, at one point, knew all that stuff… and promptly forgot in.

    I do, however, know that george washington was a redhead!

  • Miranda—Imperfectly Candid March 3, 2011, 6:03 am

    Congratulations, my fellow American! I have always been insanely proud to be a citizen of this country. Even in dark hours there are so many freedoms to be thankful for and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  • Anonymous March 3, 2011, 10:10 am

    It’s amazing the things you forget, and don’t realize how much others work so hard for, until we hear stories such as yours. With that said, I’d still be able to stay here with my score, and congratulations!

    I’d definitely be down to party if I weren’t constrained in the Midwest, and I might have even been able to be bribed into making one of those Cool Whip concoctions with the strawberries and blueberries to look like a flag. 🙂

    • Berrak March 3, 2011, 2:00 pm

      Ohhhhh, that sounds awesome. You should totally make it and overnight it to me, haha

  • gg March 3, 2011, 12:37 pm

    7 out of 10. Whew. Not an easy test at all! Congrats on your citizenship!! We’re happy to have you. 🙂

  • Anonymous March 3, 2011, 2:17 pm

    Man, I should have totally aced that, but I clicked the wrong president in the WWII question. Either that or I read it as WWI. Oh well, 9/10 lets me stay.

    I am always truly amazed and a little humbled that people from around the world choose to become Americans. It puts the things I take for granted into the proper perspective. Thank you for choosing to become one of us. We are all the richer for your decision.

    • Berrak March 3, 2011, 4:00 pm

      Yay for you getting to stay 😉 Thanks!

  • Liebchen March 3, 2011, 3:39 pm

    9/10! But honestly, I’m not sure how well I’d have done without multiple choice. So, SO proud of you for doing this. Congrats!

    • Berrak March 3, 2011, 4:01 pm

      I’m more proud of my dad for doing it 🙂


  • hey_love March 3, 2011, 5:21 pm

    Congratulations! That’s so awesome you and your dad were able to do it the same day 🙂

  • Laetitialaure March 3, 2011, 9:18 pm

    I landed two years before you and I’m sticking to my green card… for now. Being a DC resident, being able to vote isn’t enough to convince me this is something I need to do right now. If I lived in a swing state, maybe I’d try to become a citizen before the 2012 elections. For now, my green card and French passport will suffice 😉

    • Berrak March 3, 2011, 9:25 pm

      I’m also doing it for ease of applying to Federal jobs if I so choose 🙂


  • Wovoka March 3, 2011, 9:18 pm

    Eight of 10 (one too many amendments and confused the Constitution for the Declaration of Independence…duh), and CONGRAUTLATIONS!!!

  • Wovoka March 3, 2011, 9:21 pm

    Eight of 10 (One too many amendments and confused Constitution for Declaration of Independence…duh.)…and, CONGRATULATIONS!!!

  • Nicole March 3, 2011, 9:51 pm

    What a timely post. I am going for my swearing in tomorrow morning! I have been a green-card holder for almost 30 years. Once I finally decided to go ahead and apply, the application fee was far more than I’d expected and I had to save up. Becoming a citizen is expensive! Well, congratulations to you and this time tomorrow, I should be an American citizen myself. Yay us!

  • Sarahh812 March 3, 2011, 11:58 pm

    4 out of 10, sound woahhh woahh woahhhhhhh music. American history Fail. Contests though. Got teary reading this post.

    • Sarahh812 March 4, 2011, 12:02 am

      Congrats. Stupid auto correct

  • Lacochran812 March 4, 2011, 3:11 pm

    Congrats! Hard test! As if you are a better citizen because you know these things… *shakes head* …wild.

    • Berrak March 8, 2011, 6:02 am

      Thank you! These were some of the ‘easier’ possible questions out of the 100 we were given to study.

      Because working and living here for 15 years doesn’t make me enough of an American 😉

  • michelle April 9, 2011, 4:29 am

    lol i fail. i suck at history

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