A young Craigavon woman’s dream to become a primary school teacher provided the light at the end of the tunnel during the dark days she was undergoing treatment for breast cancer.
So determined was mother-of-three Lisa McClarnon (38) to qualify as a teacher that she refused to put her teacher training on hold, instead alternating her chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment with lectures at Coleraine University.
Nearly 15 years ago Lisa got a job as a classroom assistant at St Peter’s which later became St Francis’, working with special needs children, but more than anything she wanted to become a teacher.
She got a BA in Education then got a place at Coleraine to do a PGCE.
“Two months into my PGCE I was diagnosed with breast cancer,” she said. “I was getting chemotherapy then radiotherapy and in the meantime I wanted to continue my studies.”
Having completed her course of treatment and her degree Lisa got her first teaching post at her old stomping ground - St Francis’ - providing maternity cover.
She said: “You have to stay positive and stay strong. My boys never saw me cry.”
To vote for Lisa text LUM (space) PROUD (space) followed by 03 to 61500. Texts cost 25p plus standard network rates.