The California-Pacific Conference of The United Methodist Church

Five Cal-Pac Students Receive Spanish American Institute Scholarship

In 1913, the Spanish American Industrial Training School for Boys enrolled its first students in Gardena, CA. Soon afterwards, the school changed its name to the Spanish American Institute. Its aim was to provide an industrial education for Mexican boys in the California-Pacific region. Eventually, the school became a non-profit which, today, offers scholarships for deserving Hispanic men and women in the California-Pacific region.

In 2015, five Cal-Pac college students throughout the United States are recipients of its scholarship. These are students such as Dianne Torres (Vanguard University), from Fontana United Methodist Mission, who is studying to become an actor, model, and singer with a Master of Divinity in an effort to brightly shine the light of Jesus Christ in the entertainment industry.

Illiana P. Gonzalez (South Austin Community College), from Hawthorne United Methodist Church, is studying to eventually become a Christian Educator, serving in a local church somewhere.

Rosie Rios (University of California, Los Angeles), from Baldwin Park United Methodist Church, is studying to become an attorney in international human rights and eventually a legislator working towards new policy that makes equality a reality.

Jonathan Moreno (University of Colorado, Colorado Springs), from Echo Park United Methodist Church, is studying to become a physician who has accepted the challenge to deeply touch the lives of others as a passionate follower of Jesus Christ.

Xochitl Reyes (Cal-State University, Chico), from Escondido First United Methodist Church, is studying to become a journalist, shining the light of Jesus Christ in the work of truth-telling.

These students continue in the legacy of the Spanish American Institute which, over decades, has seen more than 2,400 students learn in its classrooms. Alumni of the Institute include Bishop Elias Galvan (1956-1962), Bishop in Mexico Raul Ruiz (1956-1963), District Superintendent Ignacio Castuera (1960-1964), Rev Richard Acosta (1949-1957), and Rev Ladislao Flores (1956-1959).