Green and Spiegel Employee Spotlight My Journey to Citizenship

My journey to Canada began in 2014 when I first arrived as a 16-year-old short-term international student from Bogota, Colombia. My initial purpose was simple: to improve my English language skills. However, as I immersed myself in the vibrant culture and welcoming community, I quickly fell in love with Canada. After gaining confidence in my English abilities, I returned home for a couple of months to solidify my decision to pursue further studies in Canada, as it wasn’t an easy decision at that age. Although I was excited to be able to live on my own in a different country, leaving all my family, friends, and culture behind appeared to be very scary. Eventually, with my parents’ support, I chose to pursue a bachelor’s degree in criminology at York University. Little did I know, this decision was the beginning of a new life for me in this country.

During my time as a student, I not only had the opportunity to experience firsthand the values that defined Canada — diversity, multiculturalism, freedom, and safety — but I was also fortunate to cross paths with Shoshana Green at one of our school events. My immigration process was made smoother thanks to the support of individuals like Shoshana Green and Rovena Kumbara, whose guidance and assistance helped me navigate the complexities of immigration, from obtaining my permanent residence to securing my citizenship.

Becoming a Canadian citizen was the culmination of this journey—a testament to the opportunities and open doors that Canada had offered me. I consider myself fortunate to have had a relatively smooth immigration process, allowing me to focus on my studies and career advancement. Being able to complete my Master’s degree while my citizenship application was being processed was evidence to me of the opportunities available in this country.

Today, as a Canadian citizen, I am grateful for the privilege to contribute to this diverse and welcoming country, and to be able to contribute both academically and now professionally in the immigration field. My journey is just one among many, each with its unique challenges and triumphs, but it underscores the fundamental truth that Canada is a land of opportunity—a place where individuals from all walks of life can come together to build a better future.


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