JERSEY CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — One hundred immigrants from 30 countries officially became American citizens Thursday at Liberty State Park.

As WCBS 880’s Levon Putney reported, their naturalization ceremony was held under an oversized American flag lifted by two firetruck ladders.

“It is a very appropriate place for the ceremony,” said park Superintendent Robert Rodriguez, pointing out that the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island were behind them. “Ellis Island was the immigration processing center for this part of the United States.”

“We’re looking forward to you being passionate and significant contributors,” Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop told those taking the oath.

One man from Ecuador went through a free citizenship course through the AFL-CIO. He said he’s been in the United States for 30 years and hopes to land a union job now that his citizenship qualifies him.

He said officially becoming an American is a dream come true.

“To me, it’s a pleasure, you know. I am really honored,” he said.


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