Thomas Nicholson, principal of the senior class, reminded the graduates of the "Three L's."
"Live well, laugh often and love much," he said, reminding the class that "living well does not necessarily mean living wealthy."
Nicholson told the class that being about to laugh at themselves on occasion means they have great confidence, love has no ulterior motives, and "if you want to live your life to the best, don't hold back on telling those you love you love them."
Nicholson concluded by asking students to "let me know how your life unfolds."
While administrators in the district chose to highlight quotes that embody life messages the graduating seniors should take with them as they embark upon their journeys, Brewer provided real-life memories that graduates from all high schools could relate to.
"It feels like we were little freshmen at orientation just yesterday," she said.
Eyes of the graduates were on Brewer from the floor of the convention center, but thousands of family members and friends watched from the stadium seating that surrounded it.
Parents of twin graduates, Laura Kulzer and Paul Beverino, said they were very proud of their daughters.
"I told these girls " don't blink!" said Beverino, referring to how fast the time seems to go by.
Kulzer said the girls stayed up many nights "burning the midnight oil" working on projects to get through high school.
Lou Zanello, grandfather of graduate Andrew Petsche, said that he was very excited for his grandson, and very proud of his academic achievement.
"He was an excellent student. He achieved a 90 average all four years," Zanello said.
Petsche plans to attend Villanova in the fall.
After all the names were read and diplomas received, the Colonie Central High School Class of 2008 exited the convention center in a way that one of their classmates, Cathryn Salamone, described during her senior speech.
"We are, yet again, the small fish in a big pond.""