The Army will expand a program offering a fast track to citizenship for immigrants with special language or medical skills. Based on guidance published Friday, the program, Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest (MAVNI), will increase to 3,000 enlistments this fiscal year and 5,000 in the 2016 fiscal year, up from the current limit of 1,500. An Army spokesman, Hank Minitrez, said the program was “extremely successful in filling our ranks with highly qualified soldiers who fill critical shortages.” Foreigners accepted to enlist have been legal immigrants on temporary visas. In September 2014, the program also was opened to those approved for DACA.
Health Care Professional Specialties
Health care professionals must have qualifying scores on an English language proficiency test and be fully licensed in the United States.
ACTIVE DUTY MEDICAL SPECIALTIES
Comprehensive Dentist, Oral Surgeon, Preventive Medicine, Anesthesiologist, Pediatrician, Psychiatrist, Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, General Surgeon, Emergency Medicine, Nuclear Medical Science Officer, Entomologist, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Anesthetist
ARMY RESERVE MEDICAL SPECIALTIES
General Dentist, Comprehensive Dentist, Prosthodontist, Oral Surgeon, Preventive Medicine, Urologist, Anesthesiologist, Ophthalmologist, Otolaryngologist (ENT), Psychiatrist, Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, General Surgeon, Thoracic Surgeon, Orthopedic Surgeon, Emergency Medicine, Entomologist, Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Physician Assistant, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
For Army Reserve only: health care professionals in their final year of residency may be eligible to apply to the MAVNI program.
Applicants must have a qualifying score on a proficiency test in his or her native language.
CURRENT LANGUAGES RECRUITED
Albanian, Amharic, Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bengali, Bulgarian, Burmese, Cebuano, Cambodian-Khmer, Chinese, Czech, French (with citizenship from an African Country), Georgian, Haitian Creole, Hausa, Hindi, Hungarian, Igbo, Indonesian, Kashmiri, Korean, Kurdish, Lao, Malay, Malayalam, Moro (Tausug/Maranao/Maguindanao), Nepalese, Pashto, Persian Dari, Persian Farsi, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Sindhi, Serbo-Croatian, Singhalese, Somali, Swahili, Tagalog, Tajik, Tamil, Thai, Turkish, Turkmen, Ukrainian, Urdu (with citizenship from Pakistan or Afghanistan), Uzbek, Yoruba
Service during Periods of Hostilities
Under special provisions in Section 329 of the INA, the President signed an executive order on July 3, 2002, authorizing all noncitizens who have served honorably in the U.S. armed forces on or after Sept. 11, 2001, to immediately file for citizenship. This order also covers veterans of certain designated past wars and conflicts. The authorization will remain in effect until a date designated by a future presidential executive order.
Naturalization at Basic Training
USCIS established the Naturalization at Basic Training Initiative in August 2009 with the Army to give noncitizen enlistees the opportunity to naturalize when they graduate from basic training. Under this initiative, USCIS conducts all naturalization processing including the capture of biometrics, the naturalization interview and administration of the Oath of Allegiance on the military installation. Since 2009 USCIS has expanded the initiative to the Navy, Air Force, and finally to the Marine Corps in 2013, giving enlistees of these branches equal opportunity to (in most cases) leave basic training as U.S. citizens.