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Papers of Norma E. Rancken

Papers of Norma E. Rancken

Call Number:    C  7C  R185  Shelf P

Biographical Note:  Norma Rancken (1925-2005) was a 1946 graduate of the day program in Mechanical Engineering at Cooper Union.  At the time, female students were still a rarity in Cooper Union’s Engineering School.  Norma Rancken earned a Master’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering in 1948 at Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute, where she met Murray Cossey, who became her husband.  Unable to find a full-time university teaching position because of her gender, she took education courses to qualify as a teacher in New York City high schools. Norma Rancken became the first woman to fulfill the requirements for the New York City Teaching License in Related Technical Subjects (Mechanical, Structural, Electrical), and in 1954 she was appointed to teach at McKee Vocational and Technical High School in Staten Island.  In 1972 Rancken and her husband invested in their own business (she is listed in Cooper Union’s 1973 Alumni Directory as a partner in the firm Cossey & Cossey); they retired to Florida in 1983. 

Scope and Content of Collection:   The papers consist of Cooper Union-related memorabilia, including Rancken's diploma, dance card, registration cards, grades, photograph, lab reports, correspondence and 50th Reunion book.  Also included are mechanical drawings done by Rancken's husband, Charles Murray Cossey, and Cooper Union Society of 1859 certificates for Charles and Norma Cossey.   Includes papers from 1938-2010

Provenance:   Materials were donated to Cooper Union July 23, 2007 by Barbara H. Reed of West Palm Beach, Florida.  Items were forwarded from the office of Vice-President Ronni Denes to the Cooper Archives in 2010.

Extent of Collection:   1 Box;  0.42 linear feet.

Finding Aid prepared by Mitsuko Brooks, April, 2010. 

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