The Graduate Student Government (GSG) is a University recognized organization open to all students, faculty and staff.  The objective of the GSG is to meet the unique needs of the students, to foster intrapersonal understanding, to build upon cooperation in field education, and to facilitate problem-solving between the School of Social Welfare administration, faculty, and students.  This organization functions as the propelling force of the SSW by advocating for students, advancing interests, and fostering activities.  It stresses the importance of the values of the profession of social work and is a collaboration of faculty and students to achieve these goals.  Feel free to attend a meeting and check the SSW Update for upcoming events!

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Meet your Government Board Representatives for 2022-2023!

Kathleen DiMartino, President

Kathleen DiMartino, President

Hello everyone! My name is Kathleen, my pronouns are she/her, and I am honored to have transitioned from first year representative to president this year. My goal has always been to strengthen the sense of community amongst our graduate students. I am most passionate about mental health, disability rights, and chronic illnesses. 

I attended Stony Brook during my undergraduate years, where I received a B.A. in Psychology and a Minor in Sociology. Much of that time was spent interning for The Center for Prevention and Outreach (CPO), which focused their efforts on mental health and suicide prevention. Because of my interest in higher education, my last field placement was at our school, where I provided support to undergraduate students.

I would love to hear what you think we can do to make this school a better place. I am also a listening ear to anyone that needs it. Feel free to contact me through my personal email at or email us at

Allison Montello-Young, Vice President

Hello! My name is Allison Young and I am excited to be working as your GSG VP this '22-'23 year! I'm currently in my second year of a dual MSW/MPH program, and my first semester as a Nutrition student. I grew up on LI, but I've lived all over the country and did a bit of time in Europe as well. I received a BS in Forensic Science from St. Thomas Aquinas College, along with a minor in Religious Studies. 

I'm currently working on a few projects, including topics such as Ecological Social Work, Nutrition in underserved communities, and ED diagnoses and treatment. I am very invested in working in community health, by not only providing the materials necessary to live, but also helping people experience the joy and comfort they deserve. Empathy is my number one goal, and I continue to work on that as I also continue to work on myself. 

My mission this year as the VP is diversity, inclusion, accessibility, and comfort of everyone in the SSW. If you have any issues, questions, suggestions, or anything you'd like to discuss, feel free to email me at, or if you'd like to keep it confidential you are welcome to reach out to my personal email I look forward to working for and with everyone, and would love as much feedback as you're willing to give. xx Allison

Maria Duchin, SecretaryMaria Duchin, Secretary

Hi, my name is Maria Duchin, and my pronouns are she/her/hers.  I am delighted to be your SSW GSG Secretary this year. As a second-year MSW candidate in the CPPSA specialization, I am excited to tackle much needed systemic change. Originally a “Jersey Girl”, I received my Bachelor's in Human Ecology with a Concentration in Home Economics Education from Montclair State University. 

I'm a proactive and dedicated social welfare advocate and career development professional with extensive diversified experience in education & training and event coordination. As a humanist and natural helper who possesses excellent people, communication, organizational, and analytical skills, I am recognized as a connector with demonstrated ability to broker relationships yielding to synergy, community partnerships, and strategic alliances.

I currently work as an Employment and Benefits Coordinator at Services for the UnderServed, a non-profit rapid re-housing program serving veterans and low-income individuals and families emerging from housing crisis. I am also the Board Secretary for Hair We Share, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to restoring dignity and confidence to those suffering with medical hair loss by providing human hair wigs, free of charge.

In 2008, I moved to central Suffolk County with my husband, Jared. I'm a proud dog mom who loves to travel, cook, bake, and entertain.

Alexia Bellini, SenatorAlexia Bellini, Senator

Hi! My name is Alexia, I am the senator in the graduate student government this year! I am a full time, second year student in the School of Social Welfare. My specialization is Families, Youth, and Transition to Adulthood. I am extremely excited to work with my fellow GSG peers on various opportunities for our fellow classmates! 

I attended St. Joseph’s University in Patchogue, NY for my undergraduate degree in Human Relations. I was lucky enough to gain experience in Social Work during this time by connecting with my professors and peers. I am particularly very interested in school social work, as I have a passion for working with youth of all ages. 

As senator, I aim to listen and advocate for each and every student within our program. I look forward to getting to know all of you at our future events! Please do not hesitate to reach out to my SBU email if you have any comments or concerns. Or feel free to contact us at

Karyn PygattKaryn Pygatt, Manhattan Representative

Hi everyone! My name is Karyn Pygatt and I’m honored to be Manhattan Representative. I’m a second year CPPSA student and I’m passionate about working towards a world of justice, abundance, and equity for everyone.

I graduated from the University at Albany with my bachelor’s degree in Psychology and have since worked as a Child Protective Specialist and as a Care Coordinator. My experience has given me intimate insight into the challenges many people are facing and how they’re connected to larger systems. This has inspired me to pursue macro social work.

I hope as Manhattan Representative I can help build a sense of community on the Manhattan extension site, be a resource for my classmates, and contribute to thoughtful and interesting programs. I love to connect with my classmates so please feel free to reach out to me in person or via email at

Miranda Edwards, First Year Representative

Hi everyone! My name is Miranda Edwards. I am very excited to be a first year representative for the Graduate Student Government this year. I am a full-time student in my first year of the MSW program. This is my first year at Stony Brook University. I graduated from SUNY Oneonta with a B.S. in Psychology in May 2022. I grew up on eastern Long Island, and I hope to travel and see other places in the future. 

I am very passionate about mental health issues. Currently, I am interested in possibly becoming a school social worker, because I enjoy working with children, adolescents and young adults. I realized early in my life that I want to help others and be an advocate for individuals that cannot advocate for themselves. Today, many children, adolescents, and young adults suffer in silence and do not know where to turn for help. I want to be an advocate for young people in need of educational and mental health services. I also have an interest in working in higher education-perhaps at the counseling center assisting undergraduate students with their transition to college. It is also my hope to one day become a therapist and have my own private practice. 

As a first year representative, I am looking forward to exploring how we can make Stony Brook campus an even better place! One goal I have is to reach out and speak with other students to see if they have any suggestions regarding how the student government can support them. In addition, I am eager to see if there are any programs and/or activities they would like on campus. I am a compassionate, empathetic person that loves listening to and helping others. Feel free to reach out to me through my personal email at or us at

Mai HanMai Han, Second Year Representative

Hello everyone! My name is Mai Lin Han, my pronouns are she/her, and I am honored to be the Part Time Representative for the school year of 2022-2023. I am currently in my second year in the part-time program. I am Chinese and Puerto Rican Descent and a Dog Mom. I currently work as a Target Case Manager for Samaritan Daytop Village, a non-profit Chemical Dependency Treatment Program for Substance Abuse and Mental Health. I am also one of the bilinguals' providers at my agencies dedicated to finding services to the Spanish Speaking Clients who are undocumented but have severe addiction and or mental health.

During my undergrad years, I've attended SUNY Herkimer County Community College and SUNY Cortland College and received a B.A in Sociology. During my undergrad, I worked in many human service programs all non-profit where the populations were individuals, Families from the Spanish-Speaking Community. Working in Family Service League (Bay Shore, NY) and Children and Family Services (Cortland, NY) opened my eyes to the limited resources to many of the client's I've work with and used my anger as drive to get them the services they needed. My goal is to do the same for other SW Students in the Part-time Program. I can emphasize the difficulties maintain a job and family while also attending school, but it would be worth it in the end, and your future self will thank you for it.

Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions, concerns or resources you need for your field placement at  Also be on the lookout for upcoming events to make this school year a great one! 


Matthew Mbamelu, Treasurer

Good day everyone! My name is Matthew Mbamelu. I am excited to be part of the Executive Board as the treasurer. I am currently a second-year MSW student in the Integrated Health Specialization. I received my bachelor's degree from the City College of New York Spitzer School of Architecture.

With years of professional experience in the field of architecture, I am passionate about the intersection of architecture and human behavior. And how the built environment affects human connections and mental health both at a micro (buildings) and macro (urban) level. I am also interested in exploring policies that shape cities' housing designs and availability. I believe that design should be more empathic and cater to people's needs. With that in mind, I am currently researching various ways refugee camps can be redesigned to create more comfort and increase the health outcomes and safety of the inhabitants.