Margaret Preuss

Margaret Preuss

Majoring in Finance with a minor in Philosophy

2014 • McGlinn Hall

Hometown: Granger, Indiana

Margaret is fifth in a family of ten children. Notre Dame has always been a part of her life, including attendance at football games starting at age 10. Her parents both attended Notre Dame and met here. Her second oldest brother graduated from ND in 2008. She chose to attend Notre Dame because of the community she knew she would experience. From Catholic culture to rigorous academics, to the tradition, football and the alumni network, she felt that ND would be a place full of life-giving relationships and activities.

Notre Dame is important to Margaret in many ways. “Notre Dame has challenged my faith, and helped me to grow in my relationship with Christ and the Church. Notre Dame has challenged me to use my gifts and talents to serve the greater world upon graduation. Notre Dame has become my home and given me the opportunity to choose how to spend my time and talents. This University has set me free to pursue what interests me, and has encouraged me to grow in my faith.”

Margaret loves Notre Dame’s Advent celebration. It is clear that this time of anticipation is very special to her and has been made more special by her time spent at the University. She encounters beauty in Notre Dame’s celebration of Advent in preparation for Christmas. Margaret’s attendance at dorm mass on Sunday in Advent is a constant reminder of the splendor of Christ’s coming into the world. It is a time to reflect on the coming of Jesus and His life; to look outside yourself and work to love as Jesus did.

Margaret’s favorite preparation for Advent and Christmas is Handel’s Messiah. The Chorale sings this every year in late fall at the start of Advent. “It is absolutely gorgeous. The Messiah is a powerful celebration of Jesus’ nativity, and his entire life leading up to the Ascension. This performance prepares me most for Christmas. It allows me to pray while I sing. The Messiah gives me a newfound love for Advent, and a love for the waiting period of Christmas.”

Margaret has been involved with many different groups during her time on campus. Her participation has transformed her into the student she is today, and has enabled her to follow her passions: music and business. From singing for Pope Benedict XVI in Rome to presenting a new marketing strategy for Coca-Cola Zero in Cincinnati, her experiences through these clubs have greatly enriched her education at ND. “Most importantly, being involved has given me the wonderful opportunity to meet many different students at Notre Dame. These students, the essence of Notre Dame, teach me, broaden my perspective, and provide deep friendships that I will cherish forever. “

Margaret participated in the Summer Service Learning Program through the Center for Social Concerns. She spent her SSLP in California at the Orange County Catholic Worker—Isaiah House. The Catholic Worker is in Santa Ana, a terribly impoverished area of Orange County. She lived at the Catholic Worker with 70 homeless women, and served meals to about 300 homeless people living on the streets every day. She lived like the homeless, sleeping on a bench each night and eating the same food.

This experience transformed Margaret. “My world moved beyond Notre Dame and South Bend, to understand a larger population in need of my education and service. The work opened my eyes to the need for morally responsible individuals, who have been given a stable family and good education, to give back to those in need. The summer showed me utter poverty – physical, mental, and spiritual. It was by no means an easy experience, yet it was arguably one of the happiest times of my life. The women I lived with had a way of bringing joy into each day – simple, pure joy”.

In the future, Margaret hopes to use finance as a means to work with individual clients and serve their financial needs. Specifically, she would like to work with lower and middle-income families to help them save and invest their money.