Chemistry teacher Dalia Bulgaris, who taught at Stuyvesant for 29 years, passed away from lung cancer complications on Saturday, May 3.
Bulgaris battled lung cancer several years ago. When the cancer returned in the fall of 2007, she went on medical leave two weeks into the semester.
Bulgaris is remembered by other teachers for her dedication to the school. “Stuy was a major part of her life,” chemistry teacher Daisy Furth said. “She lived to teach.”
“She was, I felt, a wonderful educator and colleague,” music teacher and chorus conductor Holly Hall said. “She cared greatly for her students and [their] achievements, even the ones outside of chemistry.”
“She stayed late [at school].” Principal Stanley Teitel said. “She would stay if she had to until six or seven […] and she was extremely well organized.”
According to chemistry teacher Dr. Steven O’Malley, Bulgaris also had a close relationship with her students. She had a “genuine interest in her students,” O’Malley said. “Her students responded well to her.”
Students in her Regents chemistry class appreciated her style of teaching. “She was always so kind and patient. I remember when she brought in chocolate for the class on special holidays like Valentine’s [Day],” junior Somi Kim said.
“I got the feeling that she really loved what she did. She would teach us with great focus and attention,” junior Charles Kuang said. “She was one of the sweetest teachers I ever had. She was very lenient and easy to approach.”
Bulgaris, along with history teacher Reuben Stern, was honored at the Naturalization Ceremony held at Stuyvesant on Wednesday, February 27 for being a naturalized immigrant who had provided service to the nation through education.
While Bulgaris was very committed to the school and her students, she had outside interests in the arts. “She enjoyed music, especially ballet,” Furth said.
Bulgaris was involved in Stuyvesant’s music community. “She was supportive of the music program. She always attended the concerts. She loved hearing the students express themselves musically and artistically,” Hall said.
Respects were paid on Tuesday, May 6 at the Gannon Funeral Home. “We went to the service [...] and various people spoke,” Teitel said. “I spoke, and so did [Assistant Principal Biology Elizabeth] Fong and Ms. Hall.”
Bulgaris will be missed by students and teachers. “Hearing about her death was really hard. I remember her class as something really fun and hearing that such a kind person had passed away was painful,” Kim said.
“She was an outstanding member of our faculty and we will miss her,” Assistant Principal Physics and Chemistry Scott Thomas said.