Sandra Bullock delivers Warren Easton High School graduation commencement speech in New Orleans

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

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

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

Bullock explains how much the students 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 day but I went back and looked at the pictures and I really didn't look so good."

Bullock has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Warren Easton since 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 said.

"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," said graduate Jada Mack.

Bullock had encouraging words for Mack, saying, "She deserves it. She's going to do better than I did in the process."

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," she advised.

Graduate Tatiana Collins was moved by Bullock's speech, "Her words just sank, they sunk in, and after she finished speaking, I just started crying."

And she gave them a laugh with advice she gives her 4-year-old son, "Do not pick your nose in public."