WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. -- It's finally Michelle Young's turn to hand out the roses on season 18 of "The Bachelorette." The former Division I basketball player and current fifth-grade teacher from Minnesota is looking for her teammate for life, and her journey begins Tuesday on ABC.
"I had such a wonderful experience because going onto it, there were just so many people rooting for me," Young told On The Red Carpet. "And the men that are on my season are absolutely amazing."
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"She just brings a different energy to everything," co-host and former Bachelorette Tayshia Adams said. "She's stunning in all walks of life and she's trying to make an improvement in the world and helping kids."
Co-hosts and mentors Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe shake things up on night one by searching the mens' rooms. One suitor's room is brimming with red flags, as the pair discovers a strategy book on how to succeed on the show and maximize screen time.
"We've always seen Michelle, who's playful and happy and loving, and I think there's going to be some really tough times for her and a lot of hard decisions," Bristowe said.
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Young loves being the Bachelorette, but she's a teacher first. Now that she has a platform, she's using it to give back to her fellow educators.
"Teachers in general, but teaching in a pandemic -- it's a lot and teachers are so unseen," Young said. "My biggest thing coming into this is: I want to fall in love, I want to find my person, but also, I'm a teacher at heart. I'm still back in the classroom."
To help kick off this season of "The Bachelorette," ABC hosted a brunch at Catch LA in West Hollywood and invited educators from the Los Angeles Unified School District to catch a sneak preview of the show. Little did they know, Young had a surprise in store for them.
In addition to book donations for the classroom, there was a special "fantasy supplies suite" for teachers. They each got to fill a bag with classroom essentials.
"To be able to give these teachers some gifts to their classroom, to their students, and take that weight off their shoulders is something that I've always wanted to do. Now that I'm in a position to do it, I want to spread the love, I want to spread the wealth," Young said.
"The Bachelorette" airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT | 7 p.m. CT on ABC.