Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
April 9, 2014

Deputy Secretary of State Heather Higginbottom will travel to Portsmouth, N.H. on April 10 to mark the 20th anniversary of the National Visa Center and to give the keynote speech at a naturalization ceremony for 29 new citizens from 15 countries. During her visit, the Deputy Secretary will also visit the neighboring National Passport Center.

The National Visa Center (NVC) opened in April 1994 to process approved immigrant visa petitions. NVC serves as the point of contact for immigrant visa applicants prior to their interviews at a U.S. embassy or consulate. Servicing more than 300,000 immigrant visa applicants per year and handling nearly 70 percent of all immigrant visa applications, NVC is a key element in the immigration process and an integral part of the State Department’s efforts to ensure the fair application of immigration law.

The Department of State employs 1,300 people at NVC and the National Passport Center, making it Portsmouth’s largest employer.

For updates on Deputy Secretary Higginbottom’s trip, follow her on Twitter: @hhigginbottom.

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