TINKER AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. —
Roughly one p.c of United States residents select to hitch the navy. For Senior Airman Chichester Agustin selecting to serve within the Air Power helped make her dream of U.S. citizenship a actuality.
Agustin was born and raised within the Pampanga province of the Philippines. Across the age of three her mom determined to go away the Philippines to pursue work visa within the U.S. to supply a greater life for the household and left Agustin and her siblings within the care of her father. By the point she was round six years outdated, Agustin’s household dynamic shifted once more when her father left to go work within the U.S., which put her and her siblings within the care of her Grandmother and Aunt.
“I needed to rising up shortly with out my dad and mom beside me, I prayed every single day for my household to be collectively once more,” mentioned Agustin.
In 2012, after highschool commencement, Agustin and her siblings moved to Los Angeles, lastly reuniting with their dad and mom after 13 years aside. Nearly instantly, her mom enrolled her in a nursing program at an area commerce faculty as she was a giant believer in encouraging her daughter to purse a dependable profession path.
“It was exhausting for me, I wished to go to school, however my coronary heart was not for nursing,” mentioned Agustin. “I used to be additionally making an attempt to regulate to new surroundings and study to turn into proficient in English.”
Not desirous to disappoint her household, Agustin did full the nursing program earlier than heading off to remain and work fulltime with family on the east coast.
Nonetheless, uncertain of what she wished to do together with her life, she spent a 12 months working for a semiconductor producer in New Jersey, soldering airplane engine elements as a part of a navy contract.
Upon returning to Los Angeles, Agustin once more enrolled in school and labored as a personal nursing assistant for a retired teacher on the Navy Fighter Weapons College, higher often called High Gun.
“It was working for Mr. Stuart Atkins, one of many first ever High Gun instructors, for 3 years and he shared his navy experiences with me, which impressed me to hitch the Air Power,” mentioned Agustin. “He instructed me that the navy might supply me a number of totally different alternatives and take me locations I by no means imagined I might go.”
Agustin joined the Air Power in 2019, with the assistance of an area recruiter, who suggested her as a inexperienced cardholder she’d solely be eligible for sure jobs. Wanting on the potential profession fields she was shortly drawn to finance.
For practically 3 years, Agustin has been a Army Pay Technician with the 72nd Comptroller Squadron and continues to work towards her bachelor’s diploma.
On Might 17 of this 12 months Agustin took the Oath of Allegiance and have become a naturalized U.S. citizen in entrance of her 72nd Comptroller Squadron teammates and companion. The method main as much as taking the oath included submitting an utility, background checks, fingerprinting and an intensive interview.
In response to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Companies, sometimes to turn into a U.S. citizen, an individual should reside within the nation for no less than 5 years earlier than turning into eligible to start the method, however Airmen are eligible to use for citizenship after one 12 months of service.
“After, coming to america 10 years in the past to hitch my dad and mom, it feels great to now be known as a U.S. citizen,” mentioned Agustin. “Citizenship opens up alternatives for me and I’ve the fitting to decide on what I wish to be no matter the place I got here from.”