ABILENE, TX -

It's never too early to start planning for your future.

The Hispanic Leadership Council held their 13 college and career planning seminar Saturday.

High School students and parents came out to Hardin-Simmons to participate in the free event.

College bound high school senior, Keirra Dean has always dreamed of achieving a higher education.

"I have three other siblings and I'm the oldest," said Dean. "They can look up to me and follow in my footsteps."

Dean is the first in the family to go to college, but she's no longer feeling the pressure.

"At first, it did and then I just realized that I need to do it for myself," said Dean.

Despite her challenges, Dean is optimistic.

"I'm not very rich financially, but I have a good support system," said Dean.

The Hispanic Leadership Council wants kids like Dean to know help for college is available.

"There are so many scholarship opportunities," said Hispanic Leadership Council Member Maria Aguirre-Acuna. "I think in the news you hear every year how many dollars are left on the table because people don't apply."

Dean has already received acceptance letters from colleges. She said her main focus is, "...achieving all my goals and having a new beginning."

She's taking this big lesson with her: "perseverance. No matter how hard it gets just keep going till you finish."

Dean's message to other students on a similar journey is "...keep going and don't give up and no matter what anyone says that they can do it if they put their mind to it."