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25 April 2008
Local Student Spends Time on Reality TV

By Jennifer Bacchus
News Staff Writer

Aaron Rush is on Paradise Hotel 2 currently airing on FOX. Photo: Anita Kilgore

Reprinted here in its entirety.

When Jacksonville State University senior Aaron Rush went to Atlanta for his Paradise Hotel 2 casting call, he followed his mother’s advice and dressed like he was going to the beach.

“I kind of stood out. My mom suggested that and I did it. It was a very good idea,” said Rush.

Rush made it on the show and is hoping his time on reality TV will help him in his career as a model, and perhaps will even give him a boost into the acting world.

A marketing major, Rush will step across the stage at JSU for his diploma a full two weeks before his show goes off the air and he hopes the exposure will help him in his job pursuits.

“I’ll graduate about the same time the show is ending. There will probably be, maybe, two shows left,” said Rush. “That’s a great time that, if I want to pursue work in the field, go after it.”

Rush entered the show, which pairs singles up together and eliminates those who don’t have a partner, on the seventh episode of the season.

“As people leave they bring new people in. I was one of the new people they brought in, I wasn’t part of the original cast,” said Rush. “When me and Chris came on I think it’s the first time in the history of the show they brought on two people at once.”

On May 19, the entire cast will be together again for a final reunion show and, though Rush has met people through the show he enjoyed spending time with, he doesn’t see any close friendships developing from his time there.

“It really gave me an outlook how everyone’s dynamic personalities interact, different people’s moral values,” said Rush. “It really made me feel good about myself.”

Rush went into the show with his eyes open, knowing temptation would exist for him to become involved with some of the female cast members, but he is proud to say that he stayed true to his morals and the way he was raised.

“I just stayed true to myself and who I am. There were times I was listening to conversations and I was like ‘I can’t believe this is being talked about,’” said Rush.

Overall, the experience was positive for Rush, who said he tried getting onto other reality shows before finally being accepted to the Paradise Hotel 2 cast. He would like to eventually move to Los Angeles to continue his modeling career and try his hand at acting, but he knows he won’t be saying goodbye to Alabama forever, since his family is here.

About Jennifer Bachus

Jennifer Bacchus is a staff writer at The Jacksonville News. She can be reached at 256-435-5021 or via e-mail at

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