In 1943, the Nurse Training Act was signed into law, creating a Cadet Nurse Corps and quickly became a key piece of the UW School of Nursing History. By the time the program graduated its last members in 1948, more than 124,000 nurses had received training and more than 1,100 of the nation’s 1,300 nursing schools participated. This act led to an double in enrollment in the school of nursing, and added 10 faculty members. The program recruited women between the ages of 17-35 to apply for “a war job with a future,” offering free training with pay, room, board and uniforms.
Nurses across the country who benefited from the bill are lobbying congress to support legislation that recognizes the Cadet Nurse Corps as active military service. UW School of Nursing Alumna Patricia Ross ’47, recently shared some information with us about efforts to have the US Congress recognize those who served in the US Cadet Nurse Corps, from 1943-1945. Current House Bill 1718, titled the United States Cadet Nurse Corps Equity Act, is currently under review by the US House of Representatives. Learn more about this bill here. You can also read more about the Cadet Nurse Corps here.