San Diego teen wins Scripps National Spelling Bee
Snigdha Nandipati, a 14-year-old from San Diego, California, won the Scripps National Spelling Bee on Thursday night by spelling the winning word, “guetapens,” which means an ambush, snare, or trap. “This is a miracle,” the eight-grader told ESPN, which aired the contest. When asked what it took for her to reach the pinnacle of spelling prowess, Nandipati said, “A lot.” She said that properly spelling the word, which is of French origin, was not difficult. Nandipati said she knew the word. “I’d seen it before.” She tied for 27th place in last year’s spelling bee.
According to the Scripps’ twitter account, Nandipati studied for six hours per day. She was cheered on by her younger brother, her parents, and her grandparents, who traveled from India to watch. The California teen wins $30,000 in cash, an engraved trophy from Scripps, a $2,500 U.S. savings bond, a reference library from Merriam-Webster, a $5,000 scholarship from the Sigma Phil Epsilon Educational Foundation, and more than $2,600 in reference works from Encyclopaedia Brittanica. This year’s spelling bee also saw its youngest contestant, a 6-year-old girl, Lori Anne Madison, of Lake Ridge, Virginia. Madison spelled the word “dirigible” with confidence, but was eliminated on Wednesday night when she misspelled “ingluvies,” which is a pouch used by birds as a receptacle for food. The spelling bee was held in the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland, just outside of D.C.