Mandy Rose spoke with FOX-Wilmington on how things led to her becoming a WWE Superstar and the origin of her ring name.

Initially getting her bachelor’s degree, Rose found her way into bodybuilding and fitness competitions, becoming the 2014 World Beauty Fitness and Fashion Bikini Champion. Thanks to her exposure in that world, the WWE took notice and brought her in for its WWE competition show, Tough Enough, in 2015.

“I was studying speech-language pathology at Iona College and I got my bachelor’s degree there. And then I was approached from a friend, actually, that was like, ‘You know, you should get into bodybuilding and fitness competitions.’ And I didn’t really know anything about that industry, but it kind of intrigued me a little bit. So I was like, ‘I’ll give it a shot.’

“You know, I always was fit and loved to work out and play sports, but I didn’t really know, you know, anything about fitness competition. So I was training to do a show in Boston with WBFF [World, Beauty, Fitness & Fashion] and I did the show, I really didn’t know what I was doing, but I placed first, which is really cool. And from then on, I went on to WBFF Worlds and I became the 2014 Bikini World Champion, which then led me to WWE. So, it’s kind of crazy.”

The WWE Superstar was also asked about where her ring name originated from. While on Tough Enough, she was known as “Mandy,” so the company didn’t want to stray away from that since that’s how fans knew her. “Rose” is actually her middle name, and holds a special meaning within her family.

“Mandy Rose: My real name is Amanda Rose Saccomanno, so a lot of people don’t know that, but Rose is kind of special in my family as my grandma’s name is Rosemary, my mom’s name is Mary Rose, I’m Amanda Rose, my niece is Demi Rose. So it kind of just keeps going in the family.

“But I was put on Total Divas right when I got signed, so before I kind of stepped foot in the ring, I was on Total Divas and I went by the name of Mandy, so ? we didn’t really want to change my name after that. It was like everyone knew me as Mandy and even from Tough Enough, so we went with Mandy Rose.”