Young Achiever Awards 2012: Great results for Mayur just months after fighting cancer
When Mayur Vaghela was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 15 he was forced to miss nine months of school to undergo treatment.
But the teenager, from Hamilton, Leicester, fought back to achieve some impressive results when he finally took his exams, receiving 12 A* to C grades.
Mayur, now 18, is the latest nominee for the GCSE category of the Leicester Mercury's Young Achiever award.
He was diagnosed with cancer in his right lung following a routine check-up for a chest inspection.
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He said that being diagnosed with cancer was a very difficult time.
"I was devastated.
"It's a big thing for a 15-year-old to have to deal with.
"But I finished my treatment in January 2010 and I've been in remission for nearly two years," he said.
The hospital visits and chemotherapy to treat non-Hodgkins lymphoma meant Mayur missed nearly a year of school and, after returning to complete his exams, received his GCSE results in 2011.
He is now starting his second year at Gateway College studying health and social care and sociology A-levels.
Mayur was nominated for the award by his former teacher, Katie Lowe, from Hamilton Community College.
She said: "I am exceptionally proud to nominate Mayur for this award.
"As far as I'm concerned, his academic success alone would make any youngster proud but the fact that he battle against the odds to get there is truly amazing."
Mayur joined Ms Lowe's English class and despite working hard he soon began to display signs that he was not well.
Ms Lowe said: "He would often have his head on the desk, he looked washed out and though he continued to try his best it soon became obvious that all wasn't right and he began to miss more and more time off school. I visited him in hospital and it was probably one of the most emotional moments of my career because at that point his parents weren't entirely sure of his prognosis," said Ms Lowe.
However, Mayur has been in remission for about two years and has been involved in raising money and awareness for the charities which helped him – such as the Teenage Cancer Trust.
He has also given talks about his experiences of cancer for the Our Space Appeal – a project aimed at building a bespoke cancer unit for youngsters at Leicester Royal Infirmary.
He said: "I think the Our Space Appeal is amazing and I can't support it enough.
"I was going through such a hard time and being able to talk to other young people and be around other young people can make all the difference."
The GCSE category is sponsored by Bosworth Academy, in Desford.
Any individual can enter up to three categories and the entry form must be endorsed by a relevant referee.
A daytime awards ceremony will be held on Thursday December 6, 2012.
For further details about the awards call Nikki Kandola on 0116 222 4310 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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