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A Proud American

Mrs. Ramsey with her third grade class

I was born in England, in a small town called Farnborough, not far from London. I studied International Business with Marketing and Spanish at Brunel University including six months studying in a military academy in Vermont and 4 months in St. Petersburg Russia. I spent 3 years working in the marketing department of a pharmaceutical software company before deciding I wanted to be a teacher.  I went back to college in London to get my teaching credentials. I then taught 3rd grade for a year in Coventry and I spent 2 years in Nottingham teaching fourth and fifth grades.

In 2006 I started getting itchy feet and wanted a new adventure. I applied for the Visiting International Faculty (VIF) program and was placed in Charlotte Mecklenburg School system. I taught 2nd grade, Kindergarten and 3rd grade at Hornets Nest Elementary and 3rd grade at Statesville Road Elementary before coming here to Rocky River Elementary. The children in Elementary schools are very similar in the UK and USA. They still want to be professional football players when they grow up but it's Soccer not American football. The biggest differences is that we start school when we are 4 in the UK so we actually have 7 years at Elementary school as supposed to the 6 you have here.

While I came to the USA on a visitors visa, in 2009 when I married my husband I applied for a green card. This was a long process and I had to go and have fingerprints and eye scans taken as well as a full background check and an interview with an immigration officer. Having green card meant I was now a permanent resident of the USA. I could get a job and pay taxes however I couldn't vote. I wanted to take the next step so I applied to become an American citizen. Again I had to have fingerprints taken. I had another background check and then the scariest part of all. I had to have an interview with an immigration officer where he asked me questions about the history, geography and politics of the USA. I passed the test and on November 21st I will take part in an Oath ceremony where I will say the pledge of allegiance for the first time and become an American. It has taken me nearly 5 years to get to this stage but I am very proud and honored to become a citizen of the USA.

Written by: Claire Ramsey
Posted: Dec 03, 2013 by Heather Shulman

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