Students at Shortridge Magnet High School for Law & Public Policy will experience the final step to becoming an American citizen first-hand on Thursday, May 1, at 10 a.m. as the school hosts a naturalization ceremony for individuals seeking citizenship. The Honorable James K. Coachys, Chief Judge in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana will preside over the ceremony, which is the result of a collaboration between the school, the court and the Indianapolis Bar Association’s Public Outreach Committee. This is the second collaboration between these groups as the school also hosted a ceremony in May 2013.
Naturalization ceremonies, typically held weekly in Indianapolis in the Birch Bayh Federal Building and United States Courthouse, feature the recitation of the United States Oath of Citizenship and provide newly naturalized citizens with a welcome to the United States, a brief overview of the justice system and the importance of citizenship, and greetings and congratulations from city and state officials and local organizations.
The Shortridge ceremony will offer the opportunity not only for the entire student body of the school to observe along with the friends and families of the new citizens, but for some students to also play an active role in the ceremony, with the Presentation of the Colors by the Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet Color Guard, the prelude by the Shortridge Chamber Ensemble, and the closing, a rendition of “America the Beautiful,” by the Shortridge Wind Ensemble. Students will also present table top American flags to the new citizens and will lead them in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.•