Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


College of Education

Primary Advisor

Dr. Susan Stanley

Second Advisor

Dr. Thomas Gollery

Third Advisor

Dr. Emile Hawkins


Recruitment and retention are persistent issues within the law enforcement organizations because positions are remaining vacant and fewer people are attracted to the profession. The purpose of this research study was to understand the differences between generational cohorts and specifically the millennial generation’s motivation for entering and remaining in the law enforcement profession, as well as their satisfaction with their career choice. This quantitative, non-experimental research study utilized a survey method to address six research questions. A convenient, purposive sample consisting of sworn police officers from one mid-size law enforcement agency located in central Florida represented the study’s data source. The overall participation rate was 41% (n = 99). The participants were classified into generational cohorts (baby boomer, Generation X, or millennial). The study’s research questions were addressed broadly using a variety of descriptive, associative, predictive, and inferential statistical techniques. One of the most notable findings was the millennial participants’ identification of the motivational factor, sense of mission, as the most prominent predictor of overall satisfaction with the decision to pursue a career in law enforcement. Another notable finding was the importance of the leadership style of police supervisors in inspiring Generation X and millennial participants to remain in the law enforcement profession.