Michelle Young is the star of "The Bachelorette" season 18, which premieres on Oct. 19, 2021. In honor of Michelle's search for love, Wonderwall.com is rounding up information about the reality star, starting with how she ended up as the show's lead… Michelle was the runner-up on Matt James's season of "The Bachelor" in early 2021, losing out to Rachael Kirkconnell at the end. She and Katie Thurston, who also vied for Matt's love, were named as the next two "Bachelorette" leads. Katie filmed her season immediately following Matt's while Michelle reportedly chose to go second to return to her job in between. "I am ready. I really do think this process works," Michelle said on Matt's "After the Final Rose" special in March 2021. "When you get to set down all the 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."
Keep reading to learn more about the newest star of "The Bachelorette"…
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Michelle Young graduated from college with a degree in elementary education. She's worked as a fourth grade teacher and most recently taught fifth grade in Burnsville, Minnesota. "They think it's pretty cool. Their families or their parents watch and have spoken highly of me," Michelle said on a March 2021 episode of the "Bachelor Happy Hour" podcast of what her students told her after she appeared on "The Bachelor." "They're a little starstruck of me sometimes — but when I give them homework, I whip them back into shape!"
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Michelle Young played college basketball at Bradley University, a Division I program. She was so good that she earned an athletic scholarship! In December 2020, she posted on Instagram about the game, writing, "50% missing the game 40% missing the camaraderie 10% missing the grind 0% missing the conditioning workouts…" Michelle left quite a legacy at Bradley: She's cited as the 13th highest scorer in Bradley athletic history.
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Following her collegiate athletic career, Michelle Young has remained committed to a healthy lifestyle. "I'm a very active person. I go to the gym, I lift weights, I stay active, I play on club basketball and kickball and all these different things," Michelle said on the "Bachelor Happy Hour" podcast. "Not that you have to be this chiseled, athletic person, but I want you to be able to live a fit lifestyle with me because I think that's something that can hold two people together." Michelle added, "When life gets busy and you both are going to work and you have all these other things going on, being able to go to the gym together and knock out a quick workout is something that I would love to have in my partner. You gotta be able to keep up with me!"
Michelle Young is a smarty-pants! Despite her demanding schedule in college as she juggled academics with basketball, she was able to keep up some impressive grades and was named to the Bradley Athletic Director's Honor Roll each of her eight semesters as a student athlete.
Michelle Young grew up with two siblings. She has a brother, Alex, and a sister, Angela. She looks forward to starting a family of her own one day with the right guy.
Michelle Young is more fun than she let on during Matt James's season of "The Bachelor." She opened up about what fans may see more of on her season of "The Bachelorette," explaining on the "Bachelor Happy Hour" podcast, "This is a side that people maybe had glimpses of, but I am pretty goofy. I don't get embarrassed easily. I am constantly laughing at myself. I don't really take life too seriously, but I can have serious conversations. I think America might see my goofy side come out a little bit more." She added that fans "saw glimpses of it in the bloopers — but, yeah, I like to joke around."
Michelle Young refers to herself as an over-worker in her ABC bio, but she does make time for hobbies too. The 28-year-old teacher said she loves wine tasting, eating food truck fare and hiking in her free time. She also said going ice-cream taste testing is one of her favorite things to do.
The new star of "The Bachelorette" is a dog mom! Michelle Young owns a pup, Chief — a short-haired dog with a black-and-white coat.
Michelle Young brings a lot to the table when it comes to relationships. In her ABC bio, she said that as a partner, she's "loyal, compassionate and supportive." Michelle's also aware of her love language, noting that she shows her partner she loves them through acts of service.