Incarceration and Family Dynamics; Race and the Criminal Justice System; Emerging Adulthood; Prisoner Reentry


Dr. Melissa E. Noel is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at Temple University. She received her Ph.D. and M.A. in Criminal Justice from the University at Albany. She served as a graduate student researcher for the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, and as a postdoctoral fellow at American University in the Department of Justice, Law, and Criminology. Dr. Noel is a criminologist whose work focuses on the intersections of race, gender, transitions to adulthood, and parental incarceration. Utilizing qualitative research methods, her ongoing research examines parental incarceration among justice involved emerging adults and strength-based perspectives within incarcerated families. Her mission is to reduce racial and health disparities among communities of color. She uses her educational platform to provide a voice for those who are marginalized.

Curriculum Vitae

Selected Publications

  • Noel, Melissa E. and Evelien M. Hoeben. (Forthcoming) “‘The Glass is Half Full’: Narratives from Young Adults on Parental Incarceration and Emerging Adulthood.” Journal of Child and Family Studies.
  • Noel, Melissa E. and Cherrell Green. (2022). “‘I Literally Roll With The Punches:’ Black and Latina Women Coping Through Parental Incarceration.” Journal of Qualitative Criminal Justice and Criminology.
  • Noel, Melissa E. and Cynthia Najdowski. (2020). “Caregivers’ Expectations, Reflected Appraisals, and Arrests among Adolescents Who Experienced Parental Incarceration.” Youth & Society.
  • Noel, Melissa E. and Cynthia Najdowski. (2019). “When parents are incarcerated, their children are punished, too.” Monitor on Psychology, 50(8), 33.
  • Washington, Heather M. and Noel, Melissa E. (2019). “Children of offenders.” In R. Morgan (Ed.), The SAGE Encyclopedia of Criminal Psychology (Vol., 1, pp. 116-118). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.

Courses Taught

  • CJ 1001: Introduction to Criminal Justice