Double and even triple majors are not unusual in college. Many concentration pairings seem natural. Accounting and economics; journalism and film studies; geography and environmental studies.
For Nick Yeutter, ’15, his academic path may seem strange to some, but it makes perfect sense for him.
“I’m a chemistry and music double-major with a pre-med concentration,” Yeutter says. “I also produce and DJ electronic music as ‘Yites.’”
Music has been a passion for Yeutter since he began playing piano at age five. “I have been particularly in love with composing music since my sophomore year in high school,” he says. “At that time, my grandmother was receiving treatment for lymphoma. To cope with the potential reality of losing her, I turned to music. Namely, I began relearning the first movement of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata.”
While practicing one evening, Yeutter played an incorrect note in the left hand: an A instead of a G-sharp. That wrong note not only changed the chord, but also significantly altered his perception of the mood of the piece. “One musical idea led to another, and within weeks, that one wrong note had transformed into my very first composition — a three-movement piano sonata entitled A Symphonic Memory,” Yeutter says.
Throughout the rest of high school and during his time at University of Richmond, Yeutter has been composing and remixing both instrumental and electronic music. His recent musical endeavors have ranged from composing cinematic pieces for Grammy-winning artists, like UR’s ensemble-in-residence eighth blackbird, to producing electronic music remixes and competing in both local and international remix contests.
Yeutter is also interested in becoming a doctor. In high school, he enjoyed his chemistry and biology classes and even shadowed a few physicians.
“The human body, as complex as it is, is really one big creation. One can even go so far as to say it's a piece of art. Both music and medicine deal with not just creation, but also the maintenance and upkeep of that creation,” he said. “I view medicine as an opportunity to create a new life for someone by repairing or reorchestrating something that didn't work the first time, which is very in-line with the art of composing music.”
This senior’s unique interests recently caught the attention of USA Today. He was profiled in USA Today's College Soundcheck column, which features musically talented students from colleges across the nation.
In the profile, Yeutter talks about how music and medicine converge for him, stimulating both the analytical and creative sides of his brain. Even though graduation is approaching, he still has time to explore the two worlds.
“I plan on applying for and attending medical school after graduation,” he says. “But in the meantime, I’m pursuing music-related opportunities such as film school and internships at record labels.”