Immigration Services Officer Erick
Job Title: Immigration Services Officer
Location: USCIS Contact Center, New York, NY
An Immigration Services Officer at the Eastern Telephone Center provides assistance to immigrants and U.S. citizens who call the USCIS Contact Center. Officers answer questions on the full range of matters associated with the nation’s immigration system.
How do you manage work-life balance?
I practice time management by establishing priorities and focusing on tasks that advance my goals. I have priorities, but I also try to be flexible at home and work.
How has your career developed?
I immigrated to the United States when I was 20 years old. After graduating from Fordham University, I held a few jobs that gave me the skills to join USCIS in my current position seven years ago. These jobs included serving as a sales merchandiser for Hershey Foods in New York for three years and then as an assistant manager for a condominium.
In both positions I acquired customer service skills that help me better serve our USCIS customers. I was inspired to join the agency so I could make a difference in people’s lives. I know that I accomplish that every day at my job.
If you had one thing you’d tell people joining USCIS Customer Service and Public Engagement, what would it be?
I would tell people that joining this team allows them to impact people positively. They will work with colleagues who are committed to public service. They will also have an opportunity to work with a team that supports them not only as officers, but as people who care about helping others. We are a multicultural blend, and we celebrate our diversity. I consider my colleagues an extension of my family. I have found decent, honest and intelligent people who make my job satisfying.
Can you describe an experience that really brought your career with USCIS to life?
One experience that comes to mind is when New York City was affected by Hurricane Sandy. During this time, many people were stranded on the East Coast, including those of us working at the Eastern Telephone Center. We were required to check in twice daily by phone to ensure that we were all right.
Some officers were asked to travel to Headquarters in Washington, D.C., to set up an emergency response unit to assist customers with their immigration issues and inquiries. Many officers, including myself, volunteered, and we were able to continue providing service even though our offices were closed for two weeks. My family was also affected, so I was able to understand how our customers were affected.