Michael O'Brien ’19, was the recipient of the Joseph A. and Evaleen E. Neufeld scholarship fund which provides assistance to deserving undergraduate students that have demonstrated financial need.
After Michael's mother was diagnosed with cancer and their family was hit hard with medical bills, she worried about how they would afford a college education for Michael. Michael himself did not think going to the University of Notre Dame was an option, but the Joseph A. and Evaleen E. Nuefeld Scholarship established through a planned gift, made a Notre Dame education affordable for the O'Briens.
When Michael's mother passed away the summer before his sophomore year, the support of his Notre Dame family never wavered. Brothers from his dorm, Sorin College, traveled to Ohio for the service, and the dorm's rector said her funeral Mass.
An electrical engineering major, Michael spent the fall of his junior year studying abroad at University College in Dublin, Ireland, expanding his horizons outside of the U.S. by making new friends, seeing new places and perspectives, and immersing himself in the Irish heritage that can be traced back on both sides of his family tree. Through personal hardships and successes at Notre Dame, Michael understands better than many that the Notre Dame family is all about helping one another. Notre Dame, he believes, crafts leaders who will make an impact on the world that cannot just be measured in dollars, but in terms of personal relationships built on compassion.