Sandra Bullock surprises N.O. high school graduates

CNN/WWL

Actress Sandra Bullock's surprise appearance wows graduates at Warren Easton High School

Tuesday, May 20, 2014 - 12:58pm

Actress Sandra Bullock has a new starring role, commencement speaker.

She surprised graduates of a New Orleans High School with a message about her life and advice for the future.

The 198 Warren Easton High School graduates didn't see the superstar smiling as she hid on the sidelines.

Actress Sandra Bullock told CNN affiliate WWL-TV how much they mean to her, "They're infectious, they inspire me, they make me try to get off my butt and do better. I love them."

And the graduates roared when she was introduced as a surprise commencement speaker.

"You know that at Warren Easton under that roof you were loved and appreciated and supported for what you had to offer. And I was trying to remember my graduation and oddly I couldn't remember anything. I thought I remembered how good I looked that they but I went back and looked at the pictures and I really didn't look so good," Bullock said, during her commencement speech.

Bullock has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Warren Easton since Hurricane Katrina when she adopted the school in the city she loves.

"I don't think you can put it into words, it's like a spice, it just, it only exists here, and I've been taking and taking, and when everything happened with Katrina, that's when you realize you have to put back," Bullock told WWL-TV’s Bill Capo.

"I'm so happy she gave me the scholarship for college, because I didn't know how I was going to pay for room and board," Warren Easton graduate, Jada Mack said.

"She deserves it. She's going to do better than I did in the process," Bullock told WWL-TV.

Like any good commencement speaker, Sandra Bullock had advice for these students as they begin the next chapter in their lives.

"Stop being so scared of the unknown, because anything I worried about didn't happen," Bullock said during her speech.

"Her words just sank, they sunk in, and after she finished speaking, I just started crying," graduate Tatiana Collins said.

And she gave them a laugh with advice she gives her 4-year-old son.

"Do not pick your nose in public," joked during her speech.

Bullock also told the graduates to find the joy in life, and make it part of every day.

Since 2006, her donations to Warren Easton have helped buy band uniforms, lockers and football equipment as well as a campus health clinic and new auditorium.

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