Jaime Oberg and Matthew Hanson
Two students in the ROTC program at Buena Vista University recently finished third at the Annual ROTC Ranger Buddy Challenge at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kan. They are Jaime Oberg, a graduate student in school counseling from Mapleton, and Matthew Hanson, a sophomore business economics major from Stanton.
“Cadets Oberg and Hanson gave it their all; they did an amazing job,” says Capt. Jared Gledhill, assistant professor of military science and officer in charge of the ROTC program at BVU. “When you look at the people they are competing against as two cadets that had never been down there before, to go down and place third is a phenomenal performance and they did the university and the program proud.”
The Ranger Buddy Challenge competition began at 4 a.m. on March 17 with a 15K road march with 35-pound packs, continued throughout the day with eight stations of training and finished with a 5K trail buddy run.
“This is one of those events that allow cadets to push themselves to their physical and mental limits,” says Gledhill. “It also allows cadets to compete with their peers who they will be serving with.”
The BVU team placed third out of 18 co-ed teams and they were in the top 5 percent of all of the cadets with over 130 teams competing from 29 schools representing 13 states. They won two events and placed second in two events.
“We wanted to compete in this event for the challenge and competition as well as to represent BVU's ROTC program,” says Jaime. “We were also competing for the air assault spot available to the first place winner. Our coach this year was Corey Hannula (a sophomore athletic training major from Woodbury, Minn.) who was one of the male participants last year. We began training and studying right after the January Interim ended. We trained for this event with Cadet Hannula twice a week for two hours each time. We also conducted road marches with Capt. Gledhill every other Thursday morning and did ruck marches on our own at night. We are both out for track, so Coach (Jeff) Brennan tweaked our workouts to help us train as well.”
“I think we finished very well for this competition being our first Ranger Challenge we have ever competed in,” says Matthew. “We worked very well together as a team. We beat many teams and made a name for BVU. I look forward to going again next year and taking first place.”