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Commencement Speaker 2021


Sr. Veronica Openibo, Society Leader of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, will deliver the address at Rosemont’s 97th Commencement Ceremonies on May 15th and 16th, 2021, and will receive an honorary degree from Rosemont.

Sr. Veronica Openibo, Society Leader of the Society of the Holy Child JesusSr. Openibo is an educator, religious leader, and public speaker. She has a special relationship with Rosemont College as the Society Leader of the SHCJ.

Sr. Openibo was elected the 13th leader of the SHCJ in 2010 and is the first African elected to lead the order. She was re-elected in 2016 and will serve her current term through 2022. Based in Rome, Sr. Openibo is also on the Executive Board of the International Union of Superiors General (UISG) and serves as Vice President of the Board of Service of Documentation and Study on Global Mission (SEDOS).

Born in Nigeria, Sr. Openibo entered the Society of the Holy Child Jesus in 1973 and professed her vows in 1975. She was the first African to lead the newly formed African province of the SHCJ from 1986-1992. She also served as president of the Nigerian Conference of Women Religious from 1990-1992 and was the first African to serve on the Society Leadership Team of the SHCJ from 1992-1998.

In February 2019, Sr. Openibo was one of three women invited to address the Vatican Synod of Bishops on Sexual Abuse. In her speech, she boldly called on the nearly 200 cardinals, bishops and leaders of religious orders for accountability and transparency and stated: “by taking the necessary steps and maintaining zero tolerance with regard to sexual abuse we will release the oppressed.”

Sr. Openibo holds a bachelor’s degree in English and Religious Studies from the University of Jos, Nigeria and a master’s degree in pastoral ministry and social work from Boston College.