Exerpt from January 11, 1943 Life magazine
New Hampshire Coeds Toughen Up For War
If, as the natives whisper, Daniel Webster sometimes revisits his childhood haunts when the wild winds whistle through the New Hampshire hills, he would find no more baffling sign of the U.S. at war than the sight of 650 rugged bare-legged girls drilling on a bleak, snow-covered field (above). These girls, students at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, are the first organized college group in the U.S. to undergo pre-graduation training like men's ROTC which will fit them specifically for service in the WAAC, WAVES, and other auxiliaries of the armed forces. For the last six weeks they have been embarked on a new intensive physical-education program which soon will be duplicated in many State universities and colleges. This new program was worked out in Washington by a committee representing the Army, Navy, WAAC, WAVES, Army and Navy Air Corps and college teachers of dancing, sports, games and physical education. It abandons purely recreational activities in favor of military drill and calisthenics (based on U.S. Army Basic Field Manual), emphasizes body building and toughening achieved through hiking, conditioning exercises, and a going-over on the rigorous, man-sized obstacle course. Freshmen, sophomores and juniors are required to put in at least three hours a week on the new program. Most seniors, who expect to join one of the auxiliaries or to undertake work in war industries, take the course on a voluntary basis. Although they have no official uniform, the girls wear light-blue shorts and blouses for indoor exercise and sometimes for more strenuous outdoor activities. Thus far the only hitch in the rigid training regime, shown on this and the following pages, developed when the university's imminent Military Art Ball made it necessary to let up on all exercises for a few days because the girls were too stiff to dance.