June 18, 2018

Originally from Carroll, Trent Jespersen couldn’t get out of small-town Iowa fast enough.

That journey, and a recent breakup, eventually led him to an attempt to win a woman’s heart in the most public of ways — as a contestant on “The Bachelorette.”

He didn’t get a rose — but the experience of trying to woo Becca Kufrin on the popular reality show was “something for the books,” Jespersen said — a complement to the adventures he’s had in the decade since he left Carroll.

After graduating from Carroll High School in 2008, Jespersen left the state and headed to Naples, Florida, where he has lived since 2009.

Since leaving the Midwest, Jespersen, 28, has been modeling for Benz Model Talent Agency as a print and fashion model — a career he found by chance through a friend.

“I thought it was a fun opportunity to do something different,” Jespersen said. “It’s something that not everybody in the world does.”

He also works as a licensed real estate agent, selling residential properties.

His modeling has taken him to the Caribbean, Canada, Mexico and South America.

He’s grateful for his career, travels and experiences.

“I am just blessed every day that I wake up,” Jespersen said. “I thank the heavens.”

Last winter, Jespersen split with his ex-girlfriend and decided once again to try something new.

“I am a professional model — I’ve done a lot of stuff,” he said. “I’ve traveled the world, but I have not been on a dating reality TV show.”

So last December, he sent in an audition video and photos to ABC’s “The Bachelorette.”

Recruiters reached out quickly, Jespersen said, and after he met with them in Florida, they flew him out to Los Angeles to audition for the show.

There, he met 27 other men, all with the same plan — to win the heart of Minnesota native Becca Kufrin.

And although they were competitors, many of the men became friends.

“We’ve had a lot of great trips planned so far,” Jespersen said.

Jespersen said he believed from the start that he was the right fit for Becca, a standout among the rest of the men because of his energy and independence.

He grew up with a single mother for most of his life and credits his mother, Jill Nulle, who still lives in Carroll with her husband Kent Nulle, for raising him well.

And after all, Jespersen said, Becca was just his type: 5 feet 7 inches, a brunette and from Minnesota.

“If you’re easy to get along with, you are usually from the Midwest,” he said.

The show’s contestants couldn’t use their phones, watch TV or get online — they just waited until Becca wanted to see them.

“There was no gym,” Jespersen said. “You couldn’t go to the gym. We had to make our own workouts.”

After the second episode, which aired on June 4, Jespersen was one of three men that went home.

And although it wasn’t aired, he did have the chance to sit down with Becca one on one. Jespersen said he was stunned when he did not receive a red rose — the symbol given to men chosen to move on to the next round.

Jespersen is now back in Florida, preparing for an upcoming move to Orlando, he said.

He’s grateful to “The Bachelorette” for giving him the opportunity to meet new people and give love a chance.

“It was a good experience,” he said. “It was definitely something for the books.”

As for the next step on his journey to find love? Jespersen isn’t sure.

Maybe he’ll end up starring on “The Bachelor.”

Anything could happen, he said.