Menu Menu

News Archive

Thursday, April 25, 2013 - OU student Alexandra Zetye juggles four majors
By Carin Inglis, media relations intern

College can be a bit overwhelming for many students trying to balance work, classes and a social life, but Alexandra Zetye thrives in the busy life.

The 21-year-old presidential scholar is in her fourth year at Oakland University, but she isn’t ready to graduate quite yet. In two more years, Zetye will have completed four degrees in the major programs of piano performance, engineering biology, math and French language.

Ultimately, Zetye plans to put her knowledge to use in the field of medical research. After Oakland, she plans to attend graduate school at a research university. Future plans may include teaching college courses and traveling oversees to work or study in France at a research institute.

But with so many courses on her plate, the biggest question for Zetye is why anyone would want to be a quadruple major? 

“It was sort of an evolution,” Zetye said. “I didn’t want to get bored in just one specialty.” 

Zetye's majors have grown out of both personal and professional interests. She has been playing piano since the age of five and initially auditioned as a piano major, but wasn’t sure exactly what she wanted her educational focus to be. 

She came to OU as a freshman with 20 credits of math and a desire to apply that knowledge. She discovered engineering biology and was immediately intrigued by the field. While her mother was in the hospital, Zetye discovered her love for the medical environment and decided to pursue a career as a family doctor. 

Zetye admits that her majors in piano and French language were selected largely for diversion and her own personal enjoyment, since she has been studying both since she was a child. 

On average, Zetye takes between 18 and 21 credits per semester and dedicates a small part of her time to working on campus. 

“It’s very tough,” Zetye commented. “It takes a lot of focus and it’s a constant struggle. I get so many cool opportunities and sometimes I want to bite off more than I can chew. I always try to be realistic and realize that I have to say no sometimes.”

Whenever Zetye has free time, she enjoys reading, playing chess and watching Disney movies. Some of her favorites are “Mulan” and “The Princess and the Frog.” 

“College is a key time to discover who you are,” Zetye said. “It’s so important to take advantage of opportunities, but do what’s best for you and don’t take on more than you can handle. Do as much as you can, but remember to prioritize.” 

Oakland University is a vibrant academic community with nearly 20,000 students and more than 260 degree and certificate programs. To learn more about academics, events, and achievements at OU, visit the news site at and follow the news team on Twitter at @OaklandU_News.