Educational Institutions

Lydia Patterson Institute brochure, 1950.

The SCJ owns two educational institutions: Lydia Patterson Institute and Southern Methodist University. Lydia Patterson Institute is a college-preparatory school in El Paso, Texas, which opened in 1913 to carry out the educational ministries begun by Methodist laywoman Lydia Patterson. Upon realizing that Mexican and Mexican-American children were often excluded from the public schools of Texas, Patterson organized day classes for boys in area homes. Before her death in 1909, Patterson also helped to establish the Effie Eddington School for girls in El Paso. During the Great Depression the institute and the school merged. Today more than four hundred students attend Lydia Patterson Institute. Nearly all of the institute’s graduates go on to college.