You've heard the sad tales of cheerleaders who graduate and never see that kind of glory again. And while some people do peak in school, for others -- like the celebrities below -- yelling at crowds of people and waving a set of pom-pons around is just a trial run for life in the spotlight.

Meryl Streep

In the late 1960s, Streep was a varsity cheerleader at Bernards High School in Bernardsville, N.J. And even then, she knew how attract attention. "She was beautiful," a close friend reports. "Everybody loved to sit there and watch her with her short skirt jumping around."

Meryl Streep cheerleader
Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images

Amy Poehler

The actress, writer and all-around gem of humanity sported some serious '80s hair as a cheerleader at Burlington High School in Burlington, Mass. Asked in an interview what advice she'd now give her 17-year-old self, Amy replied, "Put the hairspray down."

Amy Poehler cheerleader
Pascal Le Segretain, Getty Images

Jennifer Lawrence

Everyone's fantasy BFF got her school spirit on as a cheerleader at Kammerer Middle School in Louisville, Ken., where her energetic nature earned the nickname "Nitro." She later graduated from high school two years early so she could focus on her acting career full time.

Jennifer Lawrence cheerleader
Samir Hussein, Getty Images


During her recent MDNA tour, Madge wore a cheerleader costume on stage -- and it wasn't the first time. She waved her pom-pons around as a high school cheerleader at Rochester Adams High School in suburban Detroit, too.

Madonna cheerleader
Stephen Lovekin, Getty Images

Cameron Diaz

Cameron fit the stereotype of the blonde California girl as a cheerleader at Long Beach Polytechnic High School, where her classmates included none other than Snoop Lion. "I'm pretty sure I bought weed from him," she once confessed. "I was green even in high school!"

Cameron Diaz cheerleader
Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Halle Berry

The future Oscar-winner grew up in the Cleveland, Ohio area, where she attended Bedford High School and was captain of her cheerleading squad, class president, and editor of the school newspaper. Two years after graduation, the super-achiever was named Miss Ohio and later became first runner-up in the Miss USA pageant.

Halle Berry cheerleader
Dimitrios Kambouris, Getty Images

Lucy Hale

Late last year, the 'Pretty Little Liars' star tweeted out a shot of herself as a cheerleader, adding, "Literally look the same." (Since she spent her high school years being home-schooled in her native Memphis, we're guessing this was an elementary or middle school photo.)

Lucy Hale cheerleader
Jason Merritt, Getty Images

Megan Fox

Fox once claimed in an interview, "I was not, ever for a second, popular — I mean, never. Everyone hated me, and I was a total outcast." Which might have been believable had this photo of her as a pretty cheerleader (taken during her sophomore year at Morningside Academy in Port Saint Luci, Fla.) not come to light.

Megan Fox cheerleader
Jason Merritt, Getty Images

Paul Rudd

Yes, plenty of guys are cheerleaders too -- even if they're given more macho titles like "yell leaders" as Paul was at Shawnee Mission West High School in Overland Park, Kan., where he was also elected Student Body President.

Paul Rudd cheerleader
Dave Kotinsky, Getty Images

Sandra Bullock

Decades before she won a Academy Award for playing the adoptive mother of a young football star in 'The Blind Side,' Bullock spent some time on the sidelines herself as a cheerleader at Washington Lee High School in Arlington, Va.

Sandra Bullock cheerleader
Jason Merritt, Getty Images

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