Dr. Michele P. Bratina


Title: Associate Professor; Practicum Coordinator
Location: 519 BPM Center
Email: MBratina@wcupa.edu
Phone: 610-436-2647


Dr. Bratina has been teaching in the Department of Criminal Justice since 2016. She has served as President of the Northeastern Association of Criminal Justice Sciences (NEACJS) (2017-2018) and has held positions of Executive Counselor for the International and Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Sections of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Currently, she is serving as the Region 1 Trustee (Northeast U.S. and Eastern Canadian Provinces) for ACJS and also serves as Board Liaison to the Representative to the United Nations and Membership Committees for that organization. In 2023, Dr. Bratina was elected to the position of Executive Counselor for the Division of International Criminology, of the American Society of Criminology. 

At WCU, Dr. Bratina has served as Advisor for Nu Beta, the WCU Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma, a nationally recognized criminal justice honor society, and continues in her role as Adviser for the campus chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI on Campus), an organization she co-founded with two former students in 2020.  Additionally, she is currently serving as the Practicum Coordinator for the Department of Criminal Justice.  

Before entering academia, Dr. Bratina held several positions in the State of Florida, including Forensic and Children's Mental Health Coordinator for the Florida Department of Children and Families (FL-DCF) in the 19th Judicial Circuit, Systems Integrator for the Southeastern Florida Behavioral Health Network (SEBHN), and Criminal Justice Program Director for a small university in West Palm Beach. Dr. Bratina endeavors to advance mental health awareness and advocacy in the criminal justice system and in the community.

In her spare time, Dr. Bratina enjoys playing acoustic guitar and traveling. 

Education & Professional Certifications

  • Ph.D. Criminology, Indiana University of Pennsylvania
  • M.A. Criminal Justice, University of Arkansas at Little Rock
  • B.S. Applied Behavioral Science, Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg

Dr. Bratina holds the following Certifications: Crisis Intervention Team Coordinator (CIT International), Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) instructor, and SAMHSA-certified trainer for How Being Trauma-Informed Improves Criminal Justice System Responses.

Peer-reviewed Publications

Dr. Bratina is co-author with James Fagin of CJ 2019 and CJ 2022 (Pearson), and the author of Forensic Mental Health: Framing Integrated Solutions, 2nd Edition (Routledge). Her research has focused on specialized training for criminal justice professionals and the development of community partnerships in forensic mental health. Other areas of interest include secondary trauma among law enforcement officers and examining offending/offending risk and victimization through a trauma-informed lens. Dr. Bratina’s publications have appeared in the Journal of Ethnicity in Criminal JusticeInternational Journal of Police Science and ManagementPolice Practice and ResearchAbuse: An International Impact JournalSalus: An International Journal of Law Enforcement & Public Safety, the Journal of Correctional Health Care, and the Journal of Community Mental Health.    

Selected Professional service

Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS):
·      Region One Trustee
·      Executive Counselor, International Section
·      Executive Counselor, Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Section

American Society of Criminology (ASC):
·      Executive Counselor, Division of International Criminology

Northeastern Association of Criminal Justice Sciences (NEACJS):
·      Co-Chair, Professional Development Committee, Annual Meeting
·      Program Committee, Annual Meeting
·      NEACJS Chair, Criminal Justice Policy Review (CJPR) & NEACJS Paper Award
·      Immediate Past President
·      President
·      First Vice President
·      Second Vice President
·      Chair, Awards Committee

Pennsylvania Statewide Forensic Interagency Task Force (FITF)

Chester County Police Crisis Intervention Team (CIT):
·      Executive Steering Committee
·      Curriculum Committee

Selected university service

  • West Chester University of Pennsylvania (WCUPA) University Writing Council Advisory Board: Representative, College of Business & Public Management
  • Advisor, Nu Beta Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma (National Criminal Justice Honor Society)
  • Co-Advisor/Founder NAMI on Campus (National Alliance on Mental Illness)

Classes regularly taught

  • Theories of Crime and Delinquency
  • Forensic Mental Health
  • Mental Health and the Criminal Justice System

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