School of Education and Human Development

Charles Bernacchio EdD. CRC

Professor and Coordinator of Rehabilitation Counseling
Charles Bernacchio

Office Location

400 Bailey Hall



Academic Degrees

  • Ed.D., University of Maine


Charlie Bernacchio is an Associate Professor of Counselor Education in Rehabilitation Counseling. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Boston University, a master’s degree from Boston College, and an EdD in Counselor Education from the University of Maine. He first taught in the Counselor Education program in 1992 as a joint faculty appointment with the Muskie School, coordinating the Mental Health Rehabilitation Technician (MHRT-C) state certificate. In 1997 Dr. Bernacchio began as clinical placement coordinator while continuing to instruct in the Rehabilitation Counseling concentration. Along with Dr. Steve Murphy, he secured RSA funded grants to implement graduate studies in rehabilitation counseling over distance education. “Dr. Charlie” spent six years at the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill to direct its graduate Rehabilitation Counseling & Psychology program acquiring a federal grant in 2009 to create its psychiatric rehabilitation specialization. In 2008, he also has served as a member of the USPRA National Task Force Recovery Based Training for Practitioners and Mental Health Services Providers project, funded by SAMHSA. From 2011-2013, Dr. Charlie served as co-chair of the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Council from 2011-2013 and is now the Region I representative for the National Council on Rehabilitation Education.

Dr. Charlie teaches classes using distance technologies at USM and also taught online courses at UNC.  He primarily teaches Introduction to Rehabilitation Counseling & Services, Principles of Evidence-based Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Counseling Practicum and Internship. He instructs all distance supervision seminars for Counselor Education and is conversant with using Adobe Connect and Skype in conjunction with distance education classes. He has written several journal articles and book reviews particularly on psychiatric rehabilitation (PSR), best practices with psychiatric disabilities and specialized counseling curriculum, as well as conducted many national conference presentations. He recently created the Psychiatric Rehabilitation/Mental Health specialty in the Counselor Education program that qualifies for the LCPC and the CRC.  He lead a national educator panel presentation on designing PSR curriculum to be used to qualify for the new Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling accreditation with CACREP.  Dr. Charlie currently serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Applied Rehabilitation Counseling.  He is collaborating now on a colloquia speaker series - Promoting Resilience and Mitigating Risk in Youth Mental Health in the College of Management & Human Services. Dr. Charlie also serves on the Tri-County Mental Health Services Board and the Southern Maine Diversion and Re-Entry Council (a corrections and mental health partnership). His interests include PSR counseling curriculum and practice, transitioning youth supported employment, aging with disabilities, and people with co-occurring disorders in corrections.

Dr. Charlie has interests that include biking, gardening, cooking and reading, as well as meditation and fitness in keeping a balance in life.  He enjoys spending time with friends, family and their two cats, especially when his daughter comes to visit from Texas.

Areas of Expertise

Cultural diversity and variation; aging and psychiatric disabilities; specialization in psychiatric rehabilitation; and co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorders

Research Interests

Psychiatric rehabilitation counseling preparation and practice, transitioning youth supported employment, aging with disabilities, addictions and people with co-occurring disorders in corrections.

Recent Publications

Bernacchio, C. & Burker, E. (2016). Psychiatric rehabilitation of persons with co-occurring disorders and corrections involvement, Rehabilitation Research, Policy and Education Journal, 30 (3), 230-242.

Carpenter, V., Bernacchio, C. & Burker, E. (2013). Use of evidence-based practice in rehabilitation counseling: Facilitating recovery and community integration for persons with schizophrenia, Journal of Applied Rehabilitation Counseling, 44 (3), 11-22.

Buse, N., Bernacchio, C. & Burker, E. (2013). Cultural variation in resilience as a response to traumatic experience, Journal of Rehabilitation, 79 (2), 15-23.