Women’s Army Corps (WAC), U.S. Army unit created during World War II to enable women to serve in noncombat positions. Never before had women, with the exception of nurses, served within the ranks of the U.S. Army.
150,000 women were involved in the WAC. 160 of them died.
Applicants had to be U.S. citizens between the ages of 21 and 45 with no dependents, be at least five feet tall, and weigh 100 pounds or more. Over 35,000 women from all over the country applied for less than 1,000 anticipated positions.
The Women's Army Corps was successful because its mission, to aid the United States in time of war, was part of a larger national effort that required selfless sacrifice from all Americans.
Later in the war, women were trained to replace men as radio operators on U.S. Army hospital ships.
The forty black women who entered the first WAC officer candidate class were placed in a separate platoon.