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Michelle Young/Instagram

Michelle Young Is Set To Become One Of ABC's Next Bachelorettes And We Are Here For It

Our first black Bachelor may not have chosen her, but sis is bouncing back just fine!

Culture & Entertainment

The Bachelor has aired its finale and we are shooketh, y'all!

Matt James, the first black "Bachelor" of the series, has officially selected Rachael Kirkconnell, leaving Michelle Young at the altar wondering what's next. And although the history-making James may have selected the lone racist girl on the show (allegedly), her disappointment didn't last long. Because our girl Michelle Young is slated to become one of the future bachelorettes, ABC officially announced.

If you're lost about what happened on 'The Bachelor' season finale, here's a brief rundown:

Matt narrowed his choices down to the final two ladies who could win his heart. Eventually, he selected Kirkconnell, who he didn't propose to, but instead said he didn't want to live without, thus making her his selected gal. This all took place prior to the surfacing controversy that surrounded her previous questionable behavior, which includes posing at a college plantation-themed party (yes, you read that right) and liking numerous pics of the confederate flag (a flag that historically has white supremecist undertones).

On the finale after show, a beard-ganged Matt told Kirkconnell he could no longer be with her due to her problematic past, and they broke up. Womp womp.

Soon after, it was announced that Michelle would be an upcoming 'Bachelorette', which we stannnnn because we loved her!

Michelle is a teacher and former basketball star from Minnesota, who is lowkey and beautiful inside and out. She is passionate about giving back to the community—and she's looking for a beau who feels the same way. Of Michelle, her ABC bio reads,

"Michelle has big dreams for the future and says she wants a man by her side that is supportive and driven to make the world a better place. She is looking for the superman to her superwoman and says that, together, she hopes that she and Matt can fall in love and change the world."

She may be new to social media and the fame that comes along with the show, but she isn't fazed. She truly is looking for love with her perfect guy. She writes on Instagram:

"And that's a wrap! My family and I have appreciated the overwhelming support that has been shown throughout the season. Thank you for accepting us with open arms. Time to relax, recharge, and trade in these gowns for sweatpants...! At least for a little while anyway [wink emoji]"

Young was a college athlete (like James, who played football for Wake Forest University) before starting her career as a teacher. She played Division 1 basketball at Bradley University. Currently, she works as an elementary school teacher and according to her ABC bio, the Bachelor contestant "focuses on preparing her students to be the next generation of community leaders." She even had her students video-call James on The Bachelor to grill him about his intentions, which is the absolute cutest.

During the "After the Final Rose" special, it was revealed that both Young, and Katie Thurston, a 30-year-old bank marketing manager from Washington state, will be looking for love on separate seasons of the dating competition show. Thurston's Season 17 of the show is set to air on ABC this summer while Young's Season 18 will air this fall.

We can't wait to watch her season, and see where this journey leads her! Congrats, Michelle!

Are you a member of our insiders squad? Join us in the xoTribe Members Community today!

Featured image via Michelle Young/Instagram

Before she was Amira Unplugged, rapper, singer, and a Becoming a Popstar contestant on MTV, she was Amira Daughtery, a twenty-five year-old Georgian, with aspirations of becoming a lawyer. “I thought my career path was going to lead me to law because that’s the way I thought I would help people,” Amira tells xoNecole. “[But] I always came back to music.”

A music lover since childhood, Amira grew up in an artistic household where passion for music was emphasized. “My dad has always been my huge inspiration for music because he’s a musician himself and is so passionate about the history of music.” Amira’s also dealt with deafness in one ear since she was a toddler, a condition which she says only makes her more “intentional” about the music she makes, to ensure that what she hears inside her head can translate the way she wants it to for audiences.

“The loss of hearing means a person can’t experience music in the conventional way,” she says. “I’ve always responded to bigger, bolder anthemic songs because I can feel them [the vibrations] in my body, and I want to be sure my music does this for deaf/HOH people and everyone.”

A Black woman wearing a black hijab and black and gold dress stands in between two men who are both wearing black pants and colorful jackets and necklaces

Amira Unplugged and other contestants on Becoming a Popstar

Amira Unplugged / MTV

In order to lift people’s spirits at the beginning of the pandemic, Amira began posting videos on TikTok of herself singing and using sign language so her music could reach her deaf fans as well. She was surprised by how quickly she was able to amass a large audience. It was through her videos that she caught the attention of a talent scout for MTV’s new music competition show for rising TikTok singers, Becoming a Popstar. After a three-month process, Amira was one of those picked to be a contestant on the show.

Becoming a Popstar, as Amira describes, is different from other music competition shows we’ve all come to know over the years. “Well, first of all, it’s all original music. There’s not a single cover,” she says. “We have to write these songs in like a day or two and then meet with our producers, meet with our directors. Every week, we are producing a full project for people to vote on and decide if they’d listen to it on the radio.”

To make sure her deaf/HOH audiences can feel her songs, she makes sure to “add more bass, guitar, and violin in unique patterns.” She also incorporates “higher pitch sounds with like chimes, bells, and piccolo,” because, she says, they’re easier to feel. “But it’s less about the kind of instrument and more about how I arrange the pattern of the song. Everything I do is to create an atmosphere, a sensation, to make my music a multi-sensory experience.”

She says that working alongside the judges–pop stars Joe Jonas and Becky G, and choreographer Sean Bankhead – has helped expand her artistry. “Joe was really more about the vocal quality and the timber and Becky was really about the passion of [the song] and being convinced this was something you believed in,” she says. “And what was really great about [our choreographer] Sean is that obviously he’s a choreographer to the stars – Lil Nas X, Normani – but he didn’t only focus on choreo, he focused on stage presence, he focused on the overall message of the song. And I think all those critiques week to week helped us hone in on what we wanted to be saying with our next song.”

As her star rises, it’s been both her Muslim faith and her friends, whom she calls “The Glasses Gang” (“because none of us can see!”), that continue to ground her. “The Muslim and the Muslima community have really gone hard [supporting me] and all these people have come together and I truly appreciate them,” Amira says. “I have just been flooded with DMs and emails and texts from [young muslim kids] people who have just been so inspired,” she says. “People who have said they have never seen anything like this, that I embody a lot of the style that they wanted to see and that the message hit them, which is really the most important thing to me.”

A Black woman wears a long, salmon pink hijab, black outfit and pink boots, smiling down at the camera with her arm outstretched to it.

Amira Unplugged

Amira Unplugged / MTV

Throughout the show’s production, she was able to continue to uphold her faith practices with the help of the crew, such as making sure her food was halal, having time to pray, dressing modestly, and working with female choreographers. “If people can accept this, can learn, and can grow, and bring more people into the fold of this industry, then I’m making a real difference,” she says.

Though she didn’t win the competition, this is only the beginning for Amira. Whether it’s on Becoming a Popstar or her videos online, Amira has made it clear she has no plans on going anywhere but up. “I’m so excited that I’ve gotten this opportunity because this is really, truly what I think I’m meant to do.”

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