Susan Sullivan, MD, Pediatrician
Born in Northwest Arkansas and I spent most of my formative years in North Little Rock, AR, and Chandler, AZ.
Graduation year: 2005
Majors: Sociology and anthroplogy
Sorority: Kappa Alpha Theta
What is your current profession?
I currently work as pediatrician, taking care of newborn babies and sick children in the hospital in addition to being a primary care physician in the outpatient setting. I have worked with my current employer for a little over five years. I absolutely love the work that I do (although I admit that sometimes my nighttime hours are hard!). I do truly feel that God called me to this work.
What other degrees have you earned?
I graduated from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in 2010 with my Doctor of Medicine.
I graduated from Arkansas Children’s Hospital, completing my residency in pediatric medicine and becoming a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2013 and subsequently became a board-certified pediatrician in 2013.
I then completed a chief year at ACH in addition to being a formal instructor and attending physician in 2014.
I am currently in the process of obtaining my Certification in Culinary Medicine!
What organizations outside of work are you involved in?
I am involved in many organizations but I currently serve on the Board of Arkansas Advocates for Families and Children, a non-profit organization advocating for very real needs of our local families.
How did your Westminster education help you find your purpose?
Despite my love for my major and my degree, it left me feeling as if I were simply observing the world rather than actively making positive change. I was still at a loss on what my future career could be … and then I took a biology class. The world of science fascinated and challenged me all at the same time: my perfect combination. I was hooked. One day, Dr. Fickess called me into his office and told me to sit down. He said, “You, Susan, are going to be a doctor. That is all. You can leave now.” I thought he was crazy. I was never a science or math person. I didn’t think I was smart enough or talented enough. And honestly, the thought had never even crossed my mind. But he planted a seed. And as I continued to figure out my direction in life, I realized that if the hardest professor I had ever had could believe in me, maybe I could believe in myself, too.
What made you choose Westminster College?
In short, soccer and Pat Kirby. The long answer is that I didn’t even want to go to college. I wanted to make the world a better place and instead become a missionary in a third-world country. However, my parents convinced me that an education would help me learn how to change the world and do a better job at it. And they were right. When I toured WC, I fell in love with the soccer team and the small, intimate atmosphere. Pat Kirby and I connected, and the rest is history.
What is your favorite Westminster memory?
So many! One specific memory was when I was helping Robbie Langdon as a health educator. I made a full cigarette costume and hopped around campus in that costume trying to educate on smoking cessation. We all had a good laugh. I also have great memories of the quad, fraternity houses and Skulls of Seven.
What do you consider your greatest success?
I am truly most thankful and proud of my gift of mother and step-motherhood. As silly as it seems, I am really proud of the fact that I was able to breastfeed my dairy and soy allergic daughter for 21 months, all while in extensive training in residency. I can’t tell you how many times I had to interrupt pumping sessions in the middle of the night to run to a code blue and perform CPR on a baby. I always said prayers that the patient would fully recover (and that I was fully covered!)
Do you recommend Westminster to prospective college students?
Absolutely. In fact, my cousin, Kennedy, is currently enrolled at WC. WC’s small and intimate environment prevented me from getting lost in the crowd of a big university. That environment led me to fall in love with learning and subsequently led me to my current career.
My husband, Justin, and I have 4 children together: Brody, 15; Aiden, almost 13; Brinley, 10;Eden, 7; and we are in the process of trying to adopt one more! (if you have connections, let us know ;))
Favorite TV show?
Most documentaries and anything with a mystery
I love to run on the road and on trails, 5Ks to Marathons, spend time with my family and friends, eat good food, go to farmers markets, go to church and cook healthy yet delicious dishes.