Life after reality television

Posted: August 26th, 2016 | Arts & Entertainment, Features, Top Stories | No Comments

By David Dixon

Fans of the 18th season of “Big Brother” (“Big Brother 18”) are familiar with former La Mesa resident, Bronte D’Acquisto. The 2007 Miss Teen La Mesa was a contestant on the popular reality series.

However, 2016 was not the first year that D’Acquisto tried out to be on the CBS show.

“I auditioned in 2015 and made it pretty far in the process,” she said. “My goal was to go on to win the $500,000 prize to help in my pursuit of a doctorate degree. I was lucky that I got to be part of the 18th season.”

D’Acquisto wanted to make the most of the little time she had to get ready for “Big Brother 18.”

“I bought a couple of books to prepare, since you have a week of down time locked up in a hotel room,” she said. “I studied the science of psychological behavior and other similar topics.”

Live Eviction

“Big Brother” contestant Bronte D’Acquisto (left) (Courtesy of Jonathan Vy/CBS)

One of the most memorable aspects of being a contender for D’Acquisto was interacting with the different contestants.

“It’s like somebody found all your potential best friends and enemies and put them in a house,” she said. “My favorite moments were when I realized how much I adored certain houseguests and despised others. You definitely have to know who your friends and enemies are.”

Since being on television, D’Acquisto feels like she grew as a person. “I went into the competition with a lot of social anxiety,” she said. “I did not go away for college and instead lived with my parents in San Diego. I never experienced getting out of my comfort zone until being on the latest season.”

Some of her closest friends from “Big Brother 18” are Natalie Negrotti and Bridgette Dunning. “We were in an alliance called the ‘Spy Girls’,” she said. “It was our goal to gather information that would be helpful to us. They were my true friends and I hope we remain close once the season is over.”

While D’Acquisto is taking a break from reality TV, she would consider being a part of “Wipeout” if the series returns to cable. “The idea of doing a funky athletic competition really excites me,” she said.

One of her dreams is to be a mathematician. “I think I was born to be a mathematician,” she said. “I really want to work for the NSA (National Security Agency) and the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency). I’d like to use numbers to work in cyber security and fight against hackers.”

Bronte D’Acquisto was part of the “Spy Girls” alliance on “Big Brother” and hopes to one day work for the CIA or NSA. (Courtesy of Jonathan Vy/CBS)

Bronte D’Acquisto was part of the “Spy Girls” alliance on “Big Brother” and hopes to one day work for the CIA or NSA. (Courtesy of Jonathan Vy/CBS)

For season 19, D’Acquisto has words of wisdom to share with future cast members. “Don’t always think about how you are going to make it to the finale,” she said. “Sometimes you have to focus on how you are going to make it through the week. I needed to be more short sighted and not always think about what would pay off in the long run.”

Even though she starred on the small screen, the competitor is still proud of her roots in California.

“I fully believe San Diego is the best city in the entire world,” she said. “I was fortunate to grow up here, because besides shy of Hawaii, I think the city is America’s paradise. When I move back to San Diego, I would definitely want to live in La Mesa.”

Despite being eliminated on “Big Brother 18,” D’Acquisto plans on being a part of the season finale on Sept. 21. During the concluding episode, she will likely have more interesting stories to share about her time on the immensely successful game show.

“Big Brother 18” is on CBS through Sept. 21. For more information, visit

—David Dixon is a freelance writer with a bent toward theater and film. Reach him at

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