This article was originally published on DrGraduate
Before these people made it big in Hollywood, they were sitting in science class and rushing through the school hallways just like the rest of us. They went through the awkward teen years and had embarrassing moments that most of us wish we could forget. Celebs like Kim Kardashian and Matthew McConaughey have their yearbook photos to remind them of their school days, and the hilarious quotes they wrote are ways for their classmates to remember them. Take a look at these ultimate throwbacks and see what your favorite stars were like in high school.
Unlike most of us, Beyonce was already in a successful girl group, Destiny's Child, when this yearbook photo was taken. While attending the High School for Performing and Visual Arts in Houston, Queen Bee was on her way to stardom, and it doesn't look like she went through an awkward phase.
Since her early days, Beyonce has always been an inspiration to others, which shows in her yearbook quote. Most people are jealous that she has barely aged a day since high school, but that is just another perk of being Beyonce.
Before Adam Lambert was the runner-up on his American Idol season, he was just a small-town boy in San Diego, California. The singer always had a passion for music and participated in theater, choir, and jazz band. He even performed at his high school graduation ceremony.
It seems like his easy-going nature started long before he was a household name. Lambert told his classmates that he wanted a job that didn't require waking up too early, and it looks like that dream came true. His look has definitely changed over the years, and he is happy to be away from the madness of high school.
Young Anderson Cooper was bright-eyed and witty from a young age. He described his high school self as eccentric and frustrated that no one understood why he was so passionate about things. Cooper was close with the lunch ladies and well-liked by his teachers too.
Cooper's yearbook quote was, "Mary had a little lamb, the doctor fainted." He was quite the jokester back in his day, but most people didn't understand his joke. Although he grew up to be very successful, he still looks back and remembers how hard high school was.
Kanye West is known for many things, between running for President this year to being a music legend. Whether you love him or hate him, you can't deny that he was a goofy looking teenager. Growing up, he was always an artistic child, and he started writing poetry and rapping by age five.
Kanye was an ambitious teenager, and he predicted his success. He said he would be the best rapper in the world, and while that is only partially true, his 21 Grammys speak for themselves. He did well in school, and if he had a yearbook quote, we can imagine it would be something like this one.
Back in his high school days, Bruce Willis had a full head of hair, and he went by the nickname "Buck." You might not be surprised to find out he was popular in school and elected class president. Back in his day, the band kids must have been cool because he was a harp player and still considered a heartthrob.
Willis dreamed of becoming a professional harp player, but instead, he went on to be a Hollywood hunk and the star of one of the most successful action movies. Hopefully, he can say he accomplished his other goal of being deliriously happy.
Luckily for Sigourney Weaver, she achieved her goal of being anything but normal. As one of the most significant female protagonists in cinematic history, Weaver's younger self would be pretty impressed with her future accomplishments.
The Alien star stuck out in high school because she was 5'10", so she looked down on most of her classmates, but that didn't stop her from achieving great things. Besides her incredible acting career, she also graduated from Stanford and Yale; we love an educated queen.
As many people could have guessed, Channing Tatum was a self-described jock in high school. Back then, he went by "Chan" instead of his full name, and he played football. It only fits that he used a Vince Lombardi quote for his senior yearbook.
Like his 21 Jump Street character, Tatum was a troublemaker, and he got sent to the principal's office repeatedly. His bad-boy behavior attracted the ladies, but he had a girlfriend for most of his school years. Tatum was the popular boy everyone had a crush on, and it seems like some things haven't changed.
Christopher Walken was born Ronald Walken and went by "Ronnie" throughout his school years. The comedian looks almost unrecognizable in his school picture, where he used a Shakespeare quote for his yearbook entry.
Walken described himself as a "blue-eyed cavalier," and he grew up around show business because his brothers were child actors. When he was young, he was a massive fan of Elvis, so he changed his hairstyle to match the King and has kept that style ever since.
Before Owen Wilson was acting on the big screen, he attended military school in New Mexico because he got expelled from his first high school. In his early school days, Wilson was a troublemaker and often fought with other students, which gave him that signature nose that he sports on-screen.
Wilson wrote many quotes in his high school yearbook from some of his idols, including Elvis Costello and the Grateful Dead. He doesn't look like he was a bad-boy, but looks can be deceiving. After military school, Wilson went to the University of Texas at Austin, where he met Wes Anderson and got into the film industry.
As a high school freshman, Kobe Bryant made the varsity basketball team, but they were horrible. Although the team didn't have a good record, Bryant pushed everyone to try harder and turned the team around. People remembered him as difficult, but he had natural leadership skills.
He turned his high school basketball games into huge events because people would come from all over to see him play. Even then, people knew Bryant was destined for greatness. He didn't leave behind a quote in his yearbook, but he had plenty of people to thank for his success.
Although Caitlyn Cannon is not a Hollywood celebrity, she became internet famous after her blunt yearbook quote went viral. She chose a quote that spoke to her inner feminist because she wanted to leave behind something different that was true to herself.
Cannon said she was tired of seeing the same quotes from books and movies, so she called attention to a problem that women face. She stayed true to herself and became an internet icon. Cannon hopes to look back on this and laugh that a wage gap ever existed.
Jenny from the Block proved that she is absolutely ageless when she shared her high school photos. The singer went to school in the Bronx, was a member of the track team, and enjoyed dancing whenever she got a chance.
In her high school days, it seems J.Lo was a hopeless romantic based on her chosen yearbook quote. Many of her songs are inspired by love, and you can see that has always been an important theme in her successful life.
The Canadian-born actor has been quite successful in Hollywood, but it didn't seem like acting would be his profession in his early years. Ryan Reynolds failed drama class in high school because his teacher didn't like him, but he is definitely kicking himself now.
Even in high school, Reynolds was finding ways to impress girls, but he was unsuccessful most of the time. How could women resist that face? He later got expelled for stealing a teacher's car and driving it around the block. Despite his silly antics, Reynolds was clearly well-liked by his peers.
Soccer star and New Jersey native Timothy Howard's yearbook quote proves that he has always been a badass. Howard was a natural player from a young age and gained professional coaches' attention in his early teen years.
Howard was so skilled that he played in his first professional soccer game before he graduated high school. Most people knew he would do great things in his athletic career, and he has been regarded as an American soccer hero.
Tom Brady has always been the typical jock since his early football days in high school. He once said that he was a bit of a partier in high school, and that would make sense for the famous football star. He also admitted that he used to smoke weed in an interview, which is so off-brand for him.
Maybe when he was talking about the tall grass, he was referencing his use of marijuana. Unlike his high school days, Brady has left the mary jane in the past and moved on to living his healthiest life to be the best football player in the league.
Despite a page full of pictures with friends, Stephen Colbert said his favorite saying was, "Nobody loves me," and said he could be found alone. His high school ambition was to make a friend, and he liked anyone who would talk to him. Even then, Colbert was hilarious.
He was well-liked in school, but Colbert did not excel academically. Originally, he wanted to become a marine biologist, but a perforated eardrum crushed that dream because he couldn't scuba dive. Eventually, he found a love for acting, and the rest is history.
Henry "Hank the Crank" Garfield is better known as Henry Rollins, but before he became the frontman of Black Flag, he was just another nerdy high schooler. Before his football coach got him to start weight lifting, Rollins was a shy and introverted student in the herpetology club.
No one ever imagined that Rollins would grow up to become a singer, actor, comedian, and activist. The boy who lived by the motto "skate mean, live clean" turned into a punk rock star. Today he hosts a weekly radio show, and he is a regular columnist for Rolling Stone Australia.
Little John Legend has to be the cutest thing you will see today. In school, Legend was a model student who made the honor roll, became a member of the student council, and was on the academic team. He moved between cliques and had a lot of different friends.
Legend was just as cool then as he is today, and that is no surprise. As a student, he loved performing with the choir, and it seems like he was the child all parents dream of. Today he is one half of Hollywood's most loved couple and he needs a whole room to display his many awards.
Whoever went to high school with Ryan Gosling must wish that they had become closer friends with him. Shockingly, Gosling had trouble getting dates in school, and we have to know what was wrong with those girls. The Notebook star taught us everything there is to know about love.
Gosling said the girls liked the jocks, and he was more interested in dance and acting classes. This paid off for him because he has a successful career and a beautiful wife. The girls that turned Gosling down must be kicking themselves for not giving him a chance.
When Taylor Lautner said he hates shirts, every Twilight fan rejoiced. In school, he was very active and did karate, played baseball, and took hip-hop classes. Lautner also won the award for the best smile and played in his school's Turkey Bowl football game.
Although he won a school superlative, Lautner admitted that he was a bit of an outcast because he missed many school days when he would leave to shoot a movie. That seems like a small price to pay, considering the significance of his career.
Although Emma Watson spent most of her grade school years on the set of Harry Potter, she still got the school experience when she attended Brown University. Yes, this gorgeous actress is also ivy league educated, and we love that journey for her.
When Watson was able to attend classes at school, her fellow students had formal guidelines to ensure they wouldn't bother her. It was at the height of Potter mania, so it is understandable why people would be so excited to sit next to her in class.
Today Tom Cruise is one of the most powerful action stars in Hollywood, which all started in high school. He was a wrestler in high school, which provided him with adequate training for his future career. Cruise's classmates described him as a go-getter, but he always felt out of place.
After his mom got remarried, the family moved from Kentucky to New Jersey. Cruise always felt like Kentucky was his home, but wrestling gave him an outlet to meet people and feel accepted. He also fell in love with acting while recovering from a wrestling injury. Because he couldn't wrestle, he decided to audition for the school play.
Before she was Victoria Beckham, she went by her maiden name Victoria Adams. The British teen has always been a style icon, and she loved to play around with her look. Beckham said she was sent to the bathroom to remove her makeup on multiple occasions.
Although she became the world-famous Posh Spice, Beckham remembers not having many friends in school and struggling with her confidence. Classmates would bully her for being awkward, but she is the one laughing now, straight to the bank.
Pretty Woman star, Julia Roberts, is a huge success today, but what was she like in grade school? Like many people, Roberts wasn't popular, but she wasn't a ned; she was just in the middle.
Although the actress is known for her natural beauty, when Roberts was in school, the boys didn't notice her right away. She said they started to talk to her relatively late, but she didn't care. When you go on to become as famous as she is.
Jennifer Lawrence may have beat out Meryl Streep for an Oscar but that doesn't mean she didn't deal with all the awkwardness from grade school. She looked like the typical teenager, but at 14 she dropped out of school and pursued acting full time.
Lawrence doesn't have a GED or diploma, but that clearly hasn't stood in her way of success. She didn't feel like school was the right path for her, so she decided that her career was much more important.
Even the most beautiful models go through an awkward phase like Emily Ratajkowski. As a teenager, she had a skater boyfriend and couldn't decide if she wanted to pursue art or modeling. She attended an art program and was talented, but she decided to pursue modeling.
Although many people see her as someone who exudes confidence, former classmates have said that Ratajkowski had trouble making friends and stuck to herself mostly. The unexpected thing about her is that she could have taken a much different career path.
Born Laura Jean Reese Witherspoon, Reese Witherspoon grew up in the south where she was pretty and popular. The young beauty was a wrestling cheerleader because they have cheerleaders for everything where she grew up.
Witherspoon was also an over-achiever in high school and always had high grades. She loved reading and considered herself a dork. Her parents called her "Little Type A" because she was such a perfectionist, but that is one reason she has done so well in her career.
Unsurprisingly, the 44th President of the United States won a scholarship to attend an elite prep school in Honolulu. In school, he went by Barry and played basketball. His teachers remember him for his average grades and winning personality that many people love even to this day.
Although we know him as a straight-edge adult, in high school, Obama said he experimented with marijuana and cocaine. He didn't have many role models, but he did the best with what he had. After a trying childhood, he surely became an impressive figure.
If Fergie did have a yearbook quote, it would definitely be a line from her hit song "Fergalicious." The accomplished singer was a star student, spelling bee champion, and a Girl Scout. With her big '80s style hair, it looks like she was one of the most popular girls in school.
It's a good thing Fergie was a star speller in school because that definitely helped with her singing career and writing those catchy lyrics. Like many people, Fergie probably had her awkward moments, but we won't fault her.
This is not shocking considering how much everyone adores Blake Lively today, but she was also well-liked in high school. Her classmates fondly remember her as a down-to-earth person who was quite the jokester. She was even voted "Class Clown" her senior year.
It seems that popularity is eternal for people like Lively. If she had a yearbook quote, it would definitely be something Gossip Girl related. In her senior photo Lively looks like the all-American pretty high school girl who got asked to every school dance and had the most friends.
In school, Justin Bieber was not the best student, but he wasn't dumb. He was a bit of a troublemaker and a class clown because he liked to make his classmates laugh. Bieber's teachers said if he wanted to do something, he'd do it without question.
Outside of school, Bieber caused trouble for his neighbors, especially when he released his first hit song. They said he would terrorize them, and his mom couldn't control him. Today, he has matured, and Bieber is much more laid back than in his middle school days.
Before Courtney Cox played Monica in Friends, she was just a regular kid. In high school, she never would have imagined her life would change so drastically. She was just as beautiful as she is today with her bright blue eyes and dark hair.
The actress attended high school in Alabama, where she was a cheerleader and popular among her classmates. Far from how her character was portrayed in high school, Cox was never a band nerd or an outcast.
Growing up, the beyond gorgeous Amy Adams was not academically inclined and hated going to school. She dreamed of becoming a professional ballerina, but after high school, she realized she wasn't gifted enough to pursue a career in it.
Although she looked like she would be the most popular girl in school, she was actually pretty quiet and kept to herself. Adams also said she frequently fought other children, which is not something we pictured from her.
The O.C. star grew up in California, where she attended the same high school as Rami Malek and Kirsten Dunst. Rachel Bilson looks like she would be the pretty girl that every boy wanted to date, even if they were already in a relationship.
After high school, Bilson attended community college and took her father's advice to pursue a career in acting. Before she made it big, she had roles in Subway, Rasin Bran, and Pepto Bismol commercials.
Although many of Taylor Swift's music videos portrayed her as the dorky ugly duckling in high school, that was actually not true. She was pretty, friends with the popular girls, and dated a senior. It looks like Ms. Swift wasn't so honest with her fans.
However, that senior boy was the "Drew" from one of her first big hits, so we can thank him for breaking her heart and pushing her to write a song about it. He probably feels pretty dumb right about now and is still questioning why he broke up with her.
Reality star Kim Kardashian looks almost the same today as she did in high school. Kim is not shy when it comes to talking about her high school days. She attended an all-girls school in Beverly Hills and had a huge group of friends she still talks to today.
The business mogul fondly looks back on her time in high school and attended her class reunion recently. Kim had a great childhood, and she always talks about how happy she was in school. If Instagram were around when she was younger, this would definitely be her senior quote.
Matthew McConaughey was already handsome when he was in high school. The superstar actor when to school in Texas, where he was a member of many clubs and sports teams, and he was unsurprisingly voted "Most Handsome" by his senior class.
When McConaughey graduated, he didn't pick up his diploma, and finally got it when he returned to his hometown 30 years later. Although he seemed happy, he recently revealed he had some traumatic experiences in school, but those only made him stronger.
Like her character on Glee, Lea Michele was an over-achiever in high school. She attended Tenafly high school in New Jersey, where she was on the volleyball team, debate team, and choir member. She was ambitious from a young age, and her peers saw that.
Michele would take any stage job she could get in high school, and in between, she worked at a bat mitzvah dress shop near her home. She looks like the typical high school student, but she was about to get her first big break on Broadway right around the time this photo was taken.
Before Sandra Bullock was a star, she grew up in Virginia where she was the typical girl next door. Between varsity cheerleading and cracking up her fellow classmates, Bullock was like by most of her classmates.
Bullock participated in any activity she could to expand her horizons. She was fluent in German, participated in ski club, and was a member of the thespian honor society. It seems like there are few things that Bullock couldn't excel at.
Cameron Diaz wasn't always the popular star that we know today. In high school, she was bullied for being skinny, and she grew up in a frugal household because her parents did the best they could to provide for her and her sibling.
Surprisingly, she was classmates with Snoop Dogg, and she even tried to buy weed from him once. We can imagine Diaz's mean classmates are sorry that they bullied someone who became a big name in Hollywood.