The Yellow Jacket

The Student Voice of Randolph-Macon College

The Yellow Jacket

The Yellow Jacket

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RMC Hosts Naturalization Ceremony

Pictured%3A+Gabe+Laplante+19
Pictured: Gabe Laplante ’19

Fifty-five NEW United States Citizens took the oath at the Naturalization Ceremony hosted by Randolph-Macon College. A naturalization ceremony is when United States citizenship is granted to an individual originally from another country. This glorious event took place on Monday, April 15, 2024, inside the Crenshaw Gymnasium at RMC. Within the event, two Randolph-Macon employees, assistant professor in the Economics Department, Inigo Arroniz and Gabe Laplante ‘19, the assistant manager for operation in the campus store, took the oath to become United States citizens.

Gabe Laplante, an RMC graduate of 2019, was one of the fifty-five who was granted their citizenship this past Monday. Mr. Laplante was born just outside Montreal, Canada before he moved to the United States in 2010 with his mother. “I’m super thrilled, I can’t even explain how I feel. I was nervous this morning and now I’ve just got this glow on my face. I went to school here, work here, and now I’ve been naturalized here. It’s become a home within a home.” Laplante said after the ceremony. Needless to say, Gabe is beyond excited to do all the American dream things!

Professor Inigo Arroniz, originally from Spain, came to the United States in the late 1990s to obtain his doctorate from the University of Central Florida. Arroniz stated that his oldest child has reached the voting age and that together they can now go vote. He believes that it is nice they both get to experience the voting process together for the first time during the presidential election this upcoming fall. Doctor Arroniz feels so much gratitude as he can relate to his family as now a citizen of the United States.

Image via Gabe Laplante ’19

United States District Judge, David J. Novak, welcomed the soon-to-be citizens on what he labeled as “a fine day to become an American.” During this, Judge Novak featured newly naturalized citizens from Afghanistan, Vietnam, Burkina Faso, Chile, Spain, Canada, and many more countries across the globe. Attorney General Jason Miyares was the keynote speaker for the ceremony. He shared his connections within the citizen process and explained he watched his mother be granted citizenship after leaving Havana, Cuba.  Family, friends, and other guests were invited to come to the ceremony alongside Liberty Middle School.

Overall, the life changing event that took place on RMC’s lovely campus is one to remember for a lifetime. The Center of the Universe is honored to hold this beautiful ceremony and the biggest congratulations to the fifty-five new citizens of the United States!

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