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International Women’s Day

It’s the centennial of International Women’s Day! 

It began in 1911 in Europe, where it was celebrated in Germany, Austria, Denmark, and Switzerland.   Over 1 million men and women rallied for equality on the first International Women’s Day.

The theme for 2011 is:

Equal access to education, training and science and technology: Pathway to decent work for women

This is actually a theme with CECOM and predecessor organizations.   An article from the Monmouth Message on April 19, 1973, most reminded me of this.  The title of the article was “WAC Clicks at Computer.”

WAC stands for Women’s Army Corps, and this particular WAC – PFC Peggy McClintock – was a computer programmer for the U.S. Army Signal School when it was headquartered at Fort Monmouth, NJ.  Ahead of her time, PFC McClintock was working on computerized training programs.  In this day and age, computerized training via Powerpoint, computerized lessons, or online learning are parts of nearly every industry.  But in the early 1970s, this was a new technology.

These programs were developed on computers, and at the time, the Signal School only had two of them!

At the time the article was printed, the programs themselves were still new, too.  PFC McClintock enjoyed the challenge of working through various solutions to yield the same results.  According to her “It is the flexibility of choosing [my] own approach” that is most appealing about this type of work.

There is a website dedicated to International Women’s Day, and the United Nations (UN) Secretary General has a message commemorating the day as well. 

Posted in From the Archives, This Day In History.

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