CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait — Three “Spears Ready” senior noncommissioned officers have been selected to attend class 73 of the Army’s Sergeants Major Academy on Fort Bliss, Texas, this year.
Master Sgt. Vantha Chhim, Master Sgt. Jamel C. Fulks, and Master Sgt. Yadriana M. Kavitz, assigned to the Fort Bragg, N.C., based 3rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command, have been deployed here since August of 2021 staffing the 1st Theater Sustainment Command operational command post.
Chhim, a transportation senior sergeant, or 88Z, said when he enlisted in the Army 17 years ago, he did so with the intention of making it to the highest rank possible.
“That’s one of my goals, so I always seek higher responsibility and make sure I have enough responsibility to get me the validation that I’m ready for the next rank,” the Modesto, California, native said.
Chhim said he appreciates the opportunities he’s had in the Army to advance his career—opportunities he may not have had working in the civilian sector.
“Be approachable and seek opportunity,” he said. “I’m there to make sure [my supervisor and leaders] are taken care of, and in return they’ll take care of me.”
Fulks, a senior maintenance supervisor, or 91Z, said he kicked off his career 21 years ago attending Airborne School to get over his fear of heights and serving in the 82nd Airborne Division.
“I planned on doing three years and now here I am,” the Tampa, Florida, native said. “I love being around Soldiers, I love training, and I want to always be a good example for my nephews and show them they can do things the right way.”
Fulks said he’s made it to this point in his career by accepting tough leadership positions, praying, and surrounding himself with a good team and a good family.
“Work hard, stay focused, don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t accomplish something, and always be humble,” he said.
Kavitz, a senior noncommissioned logistician, or 92Z, has been in the Army for 17 years, and said she also intended to complete an initial contract.
“I am blessed,” the Bronx, New York, native said. “I thank God and thank the Soldiers and the awesome leaders I’ve had the opportunity to work with who have mentored me and pretty much gave me the aspirations to make it this far.”
Kavitz, who has earned a doctorate in education while on active duty, said she has continued to serve because of her passion for Soldiers, feeling like she has a purpose, and because she enjoys helping others. She encourages Soldiers to accept the hard assignments, to be a diverse leader, and to be eager to be educated.
The senior noncommissioned logistician said she is excited for the next chapter of her career.
“As a sergeant major I look forward to advising my commander to make decisions that are going to influence our Army and make it better,” she said.