Madison Vandergriff


Madison Vandergriff

Tayler Rayfield, Reporter

Many people have summer plans to go on vacation, and have plans to hangout with friends and family. Well not Madison Vandergriff, on June 28th she will be headed to Virginia for eight weeks for advanced individual training. AIT is where you go to learn how to do your job in the army. Madison is going to be a unit supply specialist in the army.

After she gets back home from Virginia she will attend drills one weekend a month in Desoto. Joining the army is a big commitment. Madison didn’t play sports and her grades were average. Nothing made her stick out to colleges but she has always wanted to be successful in life. Madison always wanted to make an impact so she figured why not take care of all her goals and enlist into the army. 

Usually you hear people say negative things about basic training, how it was very hard and draining but not Madison. “Basic training was one of the best things to go through for what I was going through mentally at the time.” Madison said. It was a nice break from not worrying about anything but herself. She didn’t have to worry about social media, Madison didn’t even have her phone for 10 weeks. She loved just having a break from everyday life and being a regular teenager. Madison only focused on herself and her success in her military career.  

Madison faced many challenges on her journey to accomplish her life goals. Finding the strength to keep going and not quit was difficult for Madison but she pushed through. Missing her family, friends, and freedom also was a thought that was hard for her to just push to the back of her mind. 

As her journey in the army will continue she plans on attending college. She doesn’t know what her career will be yet but once Madison can decide, she will attend a four year university to get a degree in 2024  

If doing this again was an option Madison would enlist again. The only thing she would do differently was waiting until she finished high school and then enlist in the army. So she could do basic and AIT all at once. “It will be hard leaving again.” Madison said.