Individual Case Studies of Two Childhood Cancer Survivors’ Journeys: Their Perspectives of Coping with Childhood Cancer in an Academic Setting

Defense Date


Graduation Date

Summer 1-1-2005


Campus Only

Submission Type


Degree Name



Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program for Education Leaders (IDPEL)


School of Education

Committee Chair

Lancelot Brown

Committee Member

Orlando Villella

Committee Member

Jean Higgins


Due to the technological advances in medicine, society can expect a greater number of children to become cancer survivors. The goal or discovery of this exploratory study was to obtain information and develop insights into the journey of a cancer survivor. A problem or major concern exists when the children return to their schools and the school systems are not prepared to deal with their academic, emotional or social support. The basic research questions of who made a difference and what made a difference in the children’s lives both were explored. The purpose of this dissertation was to understand the challenges and experiences of two childhood cancer survivors and the relationship between the participants and the school system. The importance of this qualitative dissertation is that it allows the reader to travel, to explore and to understand an otherwise unknown journey as seen in the eyes of the participants. The significance of this dissertation is that it generates an exchange of information as a means of insight for family members, teachers or school systems in their own pursuits of understanding the challenges that a child faces during this life-threatening crisis. The various techniques of narrative, constant comparative and multi-case studies are the vehicles of analysis for the purposes of this dissertation study. The findings from the perspective and insights from the participants are provided. Reoccurring themes of support as communication and trends are explored and identified. Tables are included to define and recognize concerns of parents and teachers.





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