Enlisted Training

In October, 1942, enlisted women also began training to become WAVES. Initially, three schools were set up on college campuses: Madison, Wisconsin, Stillwater, Oklahoma, and Bloomington, Indiana. Each would eventually become a specialty training center after the Hunter College boot camp was established in February 1943. University of Wisconsin, Madison trained radio operators. Oklahoma A&M University (now Oklahoma State University) was a training facility for yeomen. Indiana University at Bloomington trained storekeepers (interestingly, the school’s records indicate that the WAVES didn’t arrive until mid-1943 but the Navy and individual correspondence with women who trained there tell a different story).

This photo shows women arriving at the Madison, Wisconsin radio training school It comes from the National Archives.

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