Part of the community
Rose Eldridge has been in the United States for more than a decade. She has been working in Washington for 10 years now.
What some people may not know is that Eldridge recently became a U.S. citizen.
“I was so happy because I didn’t have to worry about it anymore,” Eldridge said. “I can vote now and be a part of the community.”
She is originally from the Philippines. She came to the U.S. after she met her husband, William, online.
In January, her husband approached her about becoming a U.S. citizen. She said she was a little bit nervous about taking that step. There were several steps to go through before becoming a citizen.
First, Eldridge had to fill out an application for citizenship, she said. Then in February she had to go to Des Moines to get her fingerprints taken and, while in Des Moines, Eldridge received a book on U.S. history to study.
This was to prepare for an interview she had at the beginning of June.
“I studied every night,” she said. “They told us we would be asked 10 questions about U.S. history. The book had 100 questions in it so I just memorized all 100.”
Eldridge said she answered the history questions so fast that only five were asked. After the interview she was told she had passed through all of the criteria for citizenship. On June 26, she traveled back to Des Moines for the ceremony.
Throughout the process Eldridge had her husband and son with her.
“I had them come with me because I was so nervous,” she said. “It helped to have them there with me.”
Eldridge also credits her co-workers at WalMart for their support.
“They’re so nice here,” she said. “I enjoy working with them.”
On Tuesday, July 2, her co-workers surprised her with a cake and a corsage to celebrate her citizenship.
“She was very surprised,” said store manager Dennis Purcell. “She teared up a little bit when she saw everything.”
Purcell said Eldridge isn’t just a cashier at the store.
“She’s a valuable associate and a asset,” he said. “She’s very friendly with the customers and helps not just with cashiering but stocks and does merchandising.”
Eldridge is still a little shy about her achievement. She said she doesn’t really like to talk about it.
“There are so many other people who are waiting to hear and waiting to get their citizenship,” she said.