Before the crack of dawn, students are learning the true meaning of hard work at the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo. Scholarship Chairman Jackie Simmonds sees these kids work all hours of the day to prepare.

"They're all showing and hoping to get the 'dot,' which means they're going into auction," she said.

Their work can pay off in a big way through scholarships. Since the start of the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo, it has donated more than $186 million in what it calls a commitment to education.

"It changes lives," she said. "It truly changes lives. I wish I could get every student involved in something ag-related. I think we would have a different world."

Since the start of the rodeo, more than 7,500 college students in Texas have benefited from a scholarship.

"We see it as an investment in our youth, because we see the results," Simmonds said. "We see them coming back and wanting to give back to the community."

Shaun Foster, 14, hopes to be an engineer one day and is already working towards saving up.

"It is very important," he said. "It will help me with college, and it will help us buy steers for next year."