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Mary Cole was interviewed by Carolyn Schumacher for approximately 60 minutes. Cole attended elementary and high school in Butler, PA. Education was important to Cole’s mother, who was a teacher, and Cole chose to attend Chatham College after she received a half scholarship. At Chatham, Cole majored in science and worked with the National Youth Administration, making $0.50 an hour. Following graduation, Cole taught in her High School, but then decided to enroll in the Army. She graduated from Officer Candidate School on October 3, 1942, becoming only the thirteenth woman from Pittsburgh to achieve the feat. Cole spoke about the excitement and adventure provided by her experiences in the Army, the opportunity to go to the University of Pittsburgh for graduate school through the GI Bill, flying lessons, and about her perception of discrimination against women.


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