Ariel Winter: ‘I Want to Be Like My Sister’

Ariel Winter at USA upfronts

Gregory Pace/BEImages

updated 05/17/2013 AT 1:00 PM ET

originally published 05/17/2013 AT 2:00 PM ET

Modern Family star Ariel Winter’s family life has been more drama than comedy this year – but the young actress says she’s grateful she has a strong support system in her sister.

“My sister is the most amazing woman I’ve ever met in my life,” Winter, 15, told PEOPLE at the USA Network 2013 Upfronts in New York. “If I could be half the woman she is … she’s kind of who I want to be like.”

The teen star doesn’t just reserve admiration for her older sister, Shanelle Gray, 34 – who is currently in court-ordered care of her famous sister following abuse allegations against Winter’s mother, Chrisoula Workman – but she also praises her extended family.

“[Shanelle] supports me in everything I do, and so does my brother-in-law David,” Winter said. “Both are kind of like my biggest supporters.”

The Modern Family star also joked that she’s “slightly obsessed” with her nieces.

Her TV family also plays a big part in her life off set.

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