Minnesota elementary teacher to become ‘The Bachelorette’
A Minnesota elementary school teacher who quickly stole the hearts of millions of Americans on "The Bachelor" is now set to become "The Bachelorette."
Monday night, during "The Bachelor: After the Final Rose," Edina resident Michelle Young was named "The Bachelorette" for season 18, which will premiere this fall.
The 28-year-old previously starred as a basketball player at Woodbury High School before she went on to play Division I basketball for Bradley University in Peoria, Ill.
Young was a late arrival on this season of "The Bachelor" but quickly became a fan favorite. While the ending may not have been what she was hoping for, Young will now have a chance to be the star of the show while continuing her quest to find "the Superman to her Superwoman."
The fifth grade teacher said in her "The Bachelorette" biography that she "has big dreams for the future and … wants a man by her side that is supportive and driven to make the world a better place."
Young currently works as a 5th grade teacher at Echo Park Elementary School in Burnsville. She chose to be back in the classroom Tuesday, even after ABC’s big announcement the night before.
"Today she taught a math lesson. She did the same reading lesson," fellow 5th grade teacher Kennedy Johnson said. "She is so incredibly driven, driven to be her best self, driven to help students become their best selves and world-changers really. Everyone here loves working with her."
Johnson said Young is known for empowering her students.
"I think if you could ever get a chance to walk into her classroom, you would feel like, this is one of the best places to be. She has set up such an amazing space where kids can be authentic but also know that they’re cared about and they’re loved and they can have a little fun with Miss Young too," Johnson said.
Johnson said a group of current and former coworkers have been cheering Young on during her national television debut and bought ‘Team Michelle’ t-shirts from Fancy Expressionz, a local black-owned business.
Johnson said she is inspired to see Young become one of the first black Bachelorettes in franchise history, following in the footsteps of Rachel Lindsay and Tayshia Adams.
"There are so many voices that are unheard and I think Michelle is bringing light to more of those voices. We teach our kids here at school that we stand up to injustice and how can we effectively stand up to injustice. And Michelle is doing exactly that. She recognizes the platform," Johnson said.
Fans of the Bachelor franchise in the metro told 5 EYEWITNESS News they cannot wait to see Young star in an upcoming season and represent Minnesota.
"I’m excited to see her get the spotlight and have the chance to find love," said Hannah Cilley, a fan who lives in Woodbury. "Love her. I’ve loved her from the beginning."
"I’m really excited another Minnesota girl is the Bachelorette. It’s cool because it shows that you’re represented on the national level, so we’re not just another northern state. People will actually know where Minnesota is now!" added another fan, Amelia Wherland in St. Paul.
5 EYEWITNESS News asked friends of Young if there are any little known facts they could share about the new Bachelorette.
"She can do some pretty good imitations," laughed Johnson. "You should ask her about Cindy Lou Who from the Grinch. She’s just really funny. The person you see on TV is exactly who she is in real life."
Young is now the second Minnesotan to become the Bachelorette. Becca Kufrin of Prior Lake starred in the 2018 season of the hit series.
During her interview in the After the Final Rose episode Monday night, Young said, "I really do think this process works. When you can set down all of these outside distractions and really dive in, I think you can learn a lot about somebody. I’m just excited! I’m ready to get started."