The Rt. Rev. Prince G. Singh, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Rochester and HWS Trustee, will be the keynote speaker during the 2017 Baccalaureate celebration, held on Saturday, May 13 at 1:30 p.m. in Trinity Church, 520 South Main St.
“Between his roles in the Church, in the Rochester area community and on the HWS Board of Trustees, Bishop Singh is an ideal speaker to lead the HWS community in the spirit of contemplative celebration that characterizes the Baccalaureate ceremony,” says President Mark D. Gearan.
One of the most cherished traditions at Hobart and William Smith, Baccalaureate brings together the graduating classes, their families and friends, and community members to celebrate the Colleges’ past, present and future through peaceful reflection, readings, music and prayer. A tradition dating to eighth-century England, Baccalaureate has been celebrated by the HWS community for more than 180 years. The service will also include readings by members of the Classes of 2017 and readings by the Hobart and William Smith Deans and Provost.
Bishop Singh previously served in the Diocese of Newark as Associate Rector at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, N.J., and as Rector of St. Alban’s Episcopal Church in Oakland, N.J., until his election as the Eighth Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Rochester in February 2008.
Historically, the bishop of the Rochester Diocese serves on the HWS Board of Trustees; Bishop Singh has completed nearly nine years of service, holding positions on the committees of academic affairs, compensation and human resources, and student affairs. He is also a member of the board of trustees of Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, and a member of the board of directors of Episcopal Senior Life Communities in Rochester. He chairs the Interfaith Judicatory Leaders in Rochester and taught Anglican theology and ethics at Bexley Hall – Seabury Western Federation.
He serves the Episcopal Church as a member of Bishops United against Gun Violence; the Standing Commission on Social Justice and Public Policy; Executive Council Committee on Antiracism; the Episcopal Evangelism Society; the House of Bishops Theology Committee and the College for Bishops Board. He also serves as a voting trustee of the Colleges and Universities of the Anglican Communion of which HWS is a member.
Born in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India, Bishop Singh graduated from Madras Christian College, Tambaram, and Union Biblical Seminary, both in India, and was ordained a priest in the Church of South India (Anglican Communion) in 1990. He served congregations in rural South India before earning postgraduate degrees in practical theology from Union Theological Seminary in Virginia, from Princeton Seminary, and a Ph.D. from Drew University in religion and society. In 2011, he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree from General Theological Seminary in New York City.
In January 2015, Bishop Singh attended an interfaith pilgrimage in the Holy Land, along with then-Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, the 39th recipient of Hobart and William Smith Colleges’ Elizabeth Blackwell Award.
Bishop Singh is married to Dr. Roja Singh; they have two sons.
Information on Commencement 2017 can be found at http://www.hws.edu/news/commencement2017.aspx