FMIG Profile: Arielle Sutton

Tell us a bit about yourself. 

I am a second-year medical student at the Windsor campus. I was born and raised in Toronto, completed my undergraduate degree at McGill University and my Master’s in Public Health at McMaster University. I am also a proud mom to my dog, Rigby.

What interests you about family medicine?

For me, the most important thing is developing relationships with patients. While this is of course possible in other specialties, I love the longitudinal relationship that can form between a doctor and their patient over the course of a lifetime.

Can you tell me about your experience in the program? 

So far, I have been thoroughly enjoying the program. It has of course been challenging because of the pandemic, but I love that I am learning material that will be applicable in my future career. It’s exciting to learn how to interview and examine patients- it makes me feel like a real doctor.

What has been your greatest challenge? 

The pandemic seems like an obvious answer. More specifically, being online and not being able to meet classmates was difficult. First year can be an adjustment (especially with moving to a new city) and it is especially difficult when you feel like you are in it alone, but we all got through it together.


What has been your greatest experience to date in your study?

Making it through first year medical school during a global pandemic. I know everyone in my class did the same thing, but it was a difficult year for all of us and I’m proud we made it through.


What inspires you in your work? 

I think that because I have suffered from a chronic condition since I was a teenager, I have seen the importance of empathy and strong interpersonal skills in a doctor. I have certainly been victim to the odd unfortunate experience in the healthcare system and how impactful that can be on a patient. That is what inspires me to learn how to ask questions to patients in the most sensitive way possible, for example, because of the immense impact our words, tone and body language can have on our patients.

What would you say to future students who are interested in Family Medicine?

We need more family doctors! Start shadowing and talking to family doctors to make sure it’s the right fit. But again, we need more family doctors.


Where do you see yourself in 10 years? 

Working at a family medicine clinic, with a couple of kids and lots of dogs.


What special interests or hobbies do you have?

I love playing tennis! It’s in my blood- my grandfather, father and sister all play, so it’s a family affair. I started a tennis club at the Windsor campus because I need it to unwind.