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Meet Carolyn Canonica

Carolyn Canonica is a medical blogger from the USA traveling the world with Remote Year Cousteau

Why did you decide to come on Remote Year?

Remote Year came into my life at the perfect time. I had been living in New York City and working at the same hospital for almost four years and was looking for a change. Long-term travel has always been a dream of mine, and a traditional job makes that impossible. I became frustrated with vacation time constraints and wanted to travel where, when, and for how long I wanted while also remaining employed. It was on Facebook that I discovered Remote Year, a program that would allow me to do just that while also meeting people from all over the world. It seemed like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! Once I was accepted, it was an easy decision to take the plunge!

How did you find yourself a remote role?

Despite submitting several applications for remote consulting, writing, and research positions via LinkedIn and remote job websites, I ended up securing my position through personal networking (thanks, Dad!). I formally accepted the position less than a week before flying to Cordoba!

What are you working on for the year?

I'm a Physician Assistant (PA) by trade, with 6 years of experience in both Internal Medicine and Oncology (Bone Marrow Transplant). Due to licensing and logistical issues, it was not feasible for me to practice clinically while abroad. After an extensive search for a medically-relevant remote position, I was lucky enough to land a job as a medical writer for PENTAX Medical. I will be focusing primarily on medical blogs detailing the latest research in the field of gastroenterology and medical devices.

I'll also have the unique opportunity to meet with a group of Bone Marrow Transplant physicians at their hospital in Buenos Aires. We will be comparing treatment protocols for our oncology patients. I'm hoping to incorporate this experience into my medical blogs in some way.

On a personal note, I'll be working on a travel blog. I've always journaled about my travel experiences, but never in blog form, so I'm excited to explore my creative side that way.

How do you think traveling will affect your current work?

I think it will be immensely helpful. Remote Year gave me the framework to pursue a medical career path that I hadn't considered before. As a science major and English minor in college, I'm thrilled to finally have the chance to merge these two interests and use my Masters of Medical Science degree in a novel way. I anticipate that this experience will make me more marketable in my Physician Assistant career going forward.

Where have you lived and traveled to previously?

Besides spending a semester abroad in Brisbane, Australia during college, I have never lived abroad. Over the last 10 years, I have traveled to six continents and nearly 30 countries. My travel highlights include medical missions to China, Ghana, India, and Peru, and leisure trips throughout Iceland, Europe, Costa Rica, and Japan.

Where is your favorite place on the globe?

My childhood home in Franklin Square, New York, where my parents still live today. No matter where or how long I've traveled, there's nothing like coming home and sharing those experiences with the people I love most in the world.

What would you say to others looking to bring travel into their lives?

In my experience, travel has been one of the most fulfilling paths towards personal growth. I learn more in a few weeks of traveling than I do in an entire year at home. If you have even the slightest interest in pursuing a year abroad with Remote Year, JUST DO IT!! Any sacrifices you make to bring travel into your life will be worth it once you're out there discovering different cultures, meeting incredible people, and having unforgettable experiences.

Describe your Remote Year experience so far in 3 words.

Surreal, Exhilarating, Right!

What is the best part about being a digital nomad?

The freedom to make my own schedule, which improves my mood and efficiency while enabling me to see the world at the same time!

Quote to live by?

"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."