Left to right - Thomas J. Shea Esq., Professor Allan Wernick, Annabel Palma, Leonela Startseva, Felix V. Matos

Tuesday, November 05, 2013 (Bronx, NY) - On October 19, Hostos hosted a “CUNY Citizenship Now!” event in the gymnasium. Bronx Council Member Annabel Palma sponsored the event, which was also attended by Professor Allan Wernick and Director of CUNY Citizenship Now!

Hostos Community College was represented by President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez and Hostos SGA President, Ruth Romero.

CUNY Citizenship Now! provides free, high quality, and confidential immigration law services to help individuals and families on their path to U.S. citizenship. The staff includes attorneys and paralegals who offer one-on-one consultations to assess participants’ eligibility for legal benefits and assistance to qualified applicants.

Romero, 25, who immigrated to the United States from the Dominican Republic with her family when she was 18, is passionate about immigration issues.

She is not only SGA President; she works as a paralegal for the Immigration Center at Hostos. Located in T-501 on Walton Avenue, the Center is one of several within the CUNY system that helps people navigate the immigration and naturalization process.

Romero, who is studying Science for Forensic Science as part of a dual degree program with the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, was instrumental in bringing the event to Hostos. Working with the President’s Office and Student Services, the effort helped 100 people apply for U.S. citizenship.

For Romero, the work comes straight from the heart.

“I feel good when I can answer questions, or help guide someone through the process of becoming a citizen. It is something I went through, and I am happy to share my knowledge,” Romero said.

President Matos Rodríguez said Hostos was the perfect place to hold a CUNY Citizenship Now! event.

“Being located in the South Bronx and serving such a diverse population of students through a variety of educational programs and services, hosting a citizenship event that reaches people outside our walls is something we are proud to do. Ruth, and everyone involved, really did a remarkable job.”

For more information about CUNY Citizenship Now! go to http://www.cuny.edu/about/resources/citizenship.html

About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change that has been transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. It serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, as well as a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique "Student Success Coaching Unit" provides students with individualized guidance and exemplifies its emphasis on student support services.

Hostos offers 29 associate degree programs and five certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to CUNY’s four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of The City University of New York (CUNY), the nation’s leading urban public university, which serves more than 480,000 students at 24 colleges.