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The student news site of Brimmer and May School | Chestnut Hill, MA

The Gator

The student news site of Brimmer and May School | Chestnut Hill, MA

The Gator

The student news site of Brimmer and May School | Chestnut Hill, MA

The Gator

Op-Ed: Miss Z Inspires Minds, Touches Hearts

Mckinlee DePaola
Science teacher Zoë Stublarec works one-on-one with chemistry student Stephanie Altschul ’25. “Ms. Z always helps me to understand content that I’ve missed in class. She knows all of her students, and is really able to personalize the learning experience.”

Science teacher Zoë Stublarec shines as a beacon of inspiration and warmth.

Since joining in 2019, Stublarec, affectionately known as Miss Z, has done more than just teach science; she has profoundly impacted lives, including mine, with her dedication and infectious enthusiasm.

Her journey, rooted in Connecticut where she earned a B.A. in Behavioral Neuroscience, is a tapestry of academic rigor and real-world wisdom. As a former captain of her college’s women’s soccer team and an active participant in the Women in STEM Program, Stublarec’s background is as diverse as it is impressive.

Her teaching career, preluding her time here, involved shaping young minds in chemistry at a New Haven public charter school. It was there that she began crafting her unique, adaptable teaching style, which she has since brought to our community.

Stublarec’s approach to teaching at School is nothing short of remarkable. She plans meticulously, yet remains agile enough to adapt her lessons to the dynamic energy of each class. This ability to pivot, to connect with each student, reflects her deep commitment to our educational journey. As one of her students, I have experienced first-hand the impact of her tailored approach.

Science teacher Zoë Stublarec shines as a beacon of inspiration and warmth.

As one of her students, I can attest to the joy and laughter she brings into our learning space. Her presence has been a transformative experience for many of us. Miss Z is more than a teacher; she is a mentor, a guide, and a cherished member of our school family. Her influence extends beyond the classroom, leaving an indelible mark on our hearts and minds.

Don’t just take my word for it.

“I am taking Neuropsychology and Chemistry with Miss Z, and she always makes me laugh,” Harry Hall ’25 said. “As a new student, she welcomed me to Brimmer with open arms and made me feel more comfortable in a new environment. I enjoy the hands-on lab work we do in both classes. I also greatly appreciate the dedication she has to helping us learn and understand the topics. Miss Z is an excellent teacher with an amazing personality.”

Her role extends beyond teaching Chemistry and Neuropsychology. As an Upper School Advisor, she creates a nurturing environment, fostering not just academic growth but personal well-being. Christoph Kasper ’25 describes this experience: “Having Miss Z as an advisor has been chill. She frequently checks in to make sure everything is going smoothly and is easy to have a conversation with.”

Her colleagues, too, recognize her extraordinary qualities. Fellow science teacher Celia Pan lauds Stublarec’s boundless enthusiasm: “I love working with Miss Z because I so appreciate her enthusiasm for everything that she does. Whether it is on the soccer pitch or with girls’ volleyball or in the classroom, she just exudes enthusiasm for what she is doing.”

Miss Z is an excellent teacher with an amazing personality

— Harry Hall '25

For Miss Z, the heart of her work lies in the connections she forges with us, her students.

“My favorite part about teaching is working with you all,” Miss Z said. “I like working at a small school, getting to know each and every one of the kids I teach on a personal level. “It makes the job fun because I feel like I am able to build small communities within each of my sections. “Each section has a personality of their own and it keeps me on my toes. You guys make me laugh a lot, too.”

Miss Z is a testament to the powerful influence a dedicated educator can have, shaping not just academic paths, but also life journeys.

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About the Contributor
Mckinlee DePaola
Mckinlee DePaola, Journalist
Mckinlee joined The Gator in 2023. She has been at Brimmer since 7th grade and loves it. She also loves photography, reading, listening to music, and horseback riding.

Comments (1)

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  • Heather DePaolaFeb 16, 2024 at 7:33 am

    Great article, Mckinlee! As a parent, I enjoy her bubbly personality and how she helps the students learn especially when they have questions. Thanks Ms Z!