SB AdvisoryMarch 30, 2020 update: Keep up with the latest from Stony Brook about the coronavirus situation.  More information
Skip Navigation

Graduate Student Advocate

Here to Help

Similar to the Ombuds Office, the Graduate Student Advocates (GSAs) can help resolve problems students may encounter during their graduate studies at Stony Brook. In many situations, students may simply need more information or assistance finding and contacting the appropriate people within the University. We’re here to help. 

When to Contact Us

Contact us anytime you have a serious problem or concern that you don’t know how to handle. When faced with a conflict or issue, it is always best to start locally. Talking first to your advisor, graduate program director, graduate program coordinator, or department administrator can often remedy the situation. In most cases they will be in the best position to handle your problem quickly and efficiently as they are most familiar with your specific field. When this is not possible, or if you are unsure of how to proceed, we are here to help.

Students come to us with a variety of concerns. We’ve addressed conflicts with faculty advisors, health insurance problems, housing problems, cases of discrimination, questions of academic standing, problems with funding, and other work-related issues. Work-related problems involving Graduate Assistants (GAs) and Teaching Assistant (TAs) are the jurisdiction of the Graduate Student Employees Union (GSEU) and must be referred to union representatives. In cases where the issues are particularly serious or where students may wish to work with an independent professional conflict management specialist, we can refer you to the Ombuds Office.

Whatever the issue, we will help you navigate the University’s resources to find the help you need.

How We Help:

1. Explain University policies and procedures. 
2. Assess possible courses of action and offer guidance in pursuing the options best suited to your specific situation. 
3. Refer you to the person most capable of addressing your concerns, arranging introductions and meetings as necessary.
4. Provide support on personal matters that may be effecting your academic performance. 
5. If necessary or appropriate, intercede on your behalf or mediate for you 
6. Recommend specific changes to University policy to address student issues and concerns.

Contact Us

Ashley Porcello
Mondays: 10:30 AM to 2:30 PM
Tuesdays: 8:30 AM to 1:50 PM
Thursdays: 8:30 AM to 2:15 PM 

Spring Break Office Hours:
Monday, March 16th from 8:30AM to 5:30PM
Tuesday, March 17th from 8:30AM to 2:30PM

Ashley began her educational career at Stony Brook University in the Fall of 2013 as an undergraduate student studying foreign language and international studies. Graduating with her bachelor’s in May of 2016, Ashley worked at a law firm for just under 2 years. Realizing her passion was in higher education, Ashley returned to Stony Brook to earn a Master’s of Higher Education Administration. While completing this degree, Ashley worked in numerous offices across campus including the Office of Undergraduate Education, the Graduate School’s Finance and Administration office and the Division of Student Affairs. Upon completion of her master’s degree in May of 2019, Ashley enrolled in Stony Brook University’s Master’s of Public Policy program in which she hopes to study educational policy.

The Graduate Student Advocate is designated as a Responsible Employee. As a Responsible Employee, the Graduate Student Advocate must report immediately to the Title IX office any incident of sexual violence, sexual or gender-based harassment, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking and/or retaliation that is reported to the Graduate Student Advocate or which the Advocate observe or learn about.