6 Indian American Students including Ananya Vinay Stand out in 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee Contest

The Indian American community seems to be blessed with incredible girl power. The recent achievements of India-origin girl students in USA bear a testimony to the statement. Such prestigious titles as the Miss USA 2017 Runner-up, the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee Championship, the 2017 Foot Locker Scholar Athletes, the Miss Fullerton Teen USA 2018 and likes have gone to the Indian Community in America.

Much to the surprise of USA, 12-year-old Indian American Ananya Vinay from California became the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion beating out 291 finalists among more than 11 million contestants from all over America. A 6th grader at Fugman Elementary School in Fresno, the Californian girl of Indian descent described her championship of the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee competition as a ‘dream cum true.’

Ananya Vinay Spelling Bee, 2017 Spelling Bee winner, Breaking The Bee film, Indian Americans, California Indians

Being a Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion, one of the most coveted honors for students in America, might have been a ‘dream cum true’ to Ananya Vinay, while the consistent success of Indian American students in spelling bee contests for 10 consecutive years has been questioned given the fact that Indians in American form 1% of the total US population. A documentary titled “Breaking The Bee” exploring what makes young Indian Americans national spelling bee champions will reportedly hit theaters in winter 2017.

In addition to the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion Ananya Vinay, the five runners-up are also from the Indian American community. They are Rohan Rajeev of Oklahoma in the second place, Mira Dedhia of Illinois in the third place, Sourav Dasari of Texas in the fourth place, Raksheet Kota of Texas in the fifth place, and Tejas Muthusamy of Virginia in the sixth place.

Ananya Vinay became the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee Winner by spelling the word ‘Marocain’ right (a dress fabric made from silk or rayon) in the 36th round of the grand finale with Rohan Rajeev, an 8th grader at Oklahoma Christian School in Edmond. Ananya faced off Rohan in an intense one-on-one battle for 19 rounds until the latter spelled the word ‘Marram’ incorrectly.

California Indian Ananya Vinay’s key to winning the 90th Scripps National Bee Championship is her lesson from the failure in the same contest in 2016. She beat the dust for misspelling ‘Multivalent’ in the 89th edition. She proved that hard work, determination and dedication pay off.

Being the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion, Ananya Vinay got a $40,000 cash prize, a trophy, a Kindle e-reader, a $2,500 US savings bond, a 3-year membership to Britannica Online Premium from Encyclopedia Britannica and several other prizes.

These prizes apart, she has got a rare opportunity to talk about her preparation and share her experience in various media shows including ‘Good Morning America,’ ‘Today Show,’ ‘The Wall Street Journal,’ ‘Live with Kelly and Ryan,’ and ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live!’

The five runners-up of the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee Contest – Rohan Rajeev, Mira Dedhia, Sourav Dasari, Raksheet Kota and Tejas Muthusamy – have been awarded $30,000, $20,000, $10,000, $5,000, and $2500 respectively.

The 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee winner Ananya Vinay aspires to be a doctor, scientist, or writer. She is a visualizer. Imagining stories which she has never penned nor heard is one of her interests. She is also fond of volunteering.

Indian Eagle, a trusted travel partner of Indians in America for booking their travel to India, publishes stories of Indians in USA, shares latest air travel news and lists upcoming Indian American events on Travel Beats, a leading Indian community portal. 

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