Increasing Gender Diversity at the FDNY

Client: Fire Department of New York
Faculty: Erica Foldy
Team: Deborah Apeloig, Lara Freishtat, Casey Heim, Tinia McCoy, Emily Pickens
Year: 2010
The Fire Department of New York (FDNY) currently employs almost 12,000 firefighters, but fewer than 1% of them are women. The FDNY is seeking to increase these numbers so that its firefighter workforce will better reflect the diversity of the population it serves. The FDNY employed the Capstone team to gather both quantitative and qualitative data from past research studies, interviews with the FDNY's current female firefighters, and a survey of women between the ages of 15 and 30. The team made recommendations to the FDNY in regard to what characteristics, if any, predict greater interest in becoming a firefighter, how and where to locate these women, and what types of marketing messages are more appealing to them. These recommendations will provide a point of reference as the FDNY begins its new recruitment campaign.