Six months before graduating from Blackfoot High School in May 2012, Cheyenne Oleson joined the Idaho National Guard.
“I wanted to be part of something bigger than myself,” she said.
Oleson is an E2, private second class, and is an unit supply specialist.
Her job is to keep track of all inventory and all supplies—incoming and outgoing. She has a bead on everything from fruit to nuts, or more accurately, everything from socks to tanks and a whole lot more in between.
Oleson was 10 weeks in boot camp, completing it on July 2 at Fort Jackson, S.C. She then spent the next nine weeks in schooling for her specialty—unit supplies. She was assigned to Fort Lee, Virg., that is outside Richmond.
“It’s about one and one-half hours away from Virginia Beach,” Oleson said. “No, I didn’t go to the beach.”
While attending advanced individual training (AIT), Oleson’s day started at 5 a.m. with an hour to an hour and one-half of physical training.
At [breakfast] chow, she had 10 minutes of sit down time and then it was off to “classroom stuff.”
Lunch was at noon with another 10 minutes allowed for chow. Training out on the range took up the afternoon with exercise to enhance “warrior task and drills,” she said.
She earned her sharpshooter distinction.
“Training enhanced everything,” Oleson said. “I’m more patient and I don’t jump [at everything] as much.
“I’m more physically capable,” she said. “[Training] enhances who you are.
Oleson is assigned to headquarters at the 116th HHC Battalion in Twin Falls.
“My unit is deployable,” Oleson said. “I can be shipped off.”
Until then, Oleson will begin college at the College of Southern Idaho on Jan. 7. Being in the Guard, she will serve one weekend each month and two weeks in the summer. Her commitment is for eight years.
“I would recommend the Guard for almost anybody,” she said. “You meet so many different people, cultures and stuff.
“The National Guard helps you better your life and better the person you want to be,” said Oleson.