Snigdha Nandipati wins Scripps National Spelling Bee

Thu, May 31, 2012 by Micheal Hickerson

Snigdha Nandipati, a 14-year-old speller from San Diego, Calif., won the 2012 Scripps National Spelling Bee Thursday night.

Nandipati was named the Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion in the 13th round after correctly spelling the word "guetapens," which is defined as "an ambush, snare, or trap."

Nandipati represented U-T San Diego in San Diego, Calif., in this year's competition. She is an eighth grade student at Francis Parker School in San Diego, Calif.

This was the second consecutive Scripps National Spelling Bee in which Snigdha competed. She tied for 27th place in last year's Bee.                                     

The preliminary and championship rounds of this year's Bee were broadcast live on ESPN. The primetime broadcast lasted seven rounds.

The spelling competition began Tuesday with 278 competitors who qualified to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee by winning locally sponsored bees in their home communities.

Rich Boehne, president and chief executive officer of The E. W. Scripps Company, declared Nandipati the national champion and awarded her the engraved Scripps National Spelling Bee Championship loving cup immediately after the winning word was correctly spelled.

"Congratulations to Snigdha, who captivated the world by mastering some of the most difficult words in the English language and thrilled us all in becoming the 2012 national champion,” Boehne said. "The Scripps National Spelling Bee is truly a national treasure and we take great pride in seeing these young leaders rise to the occasion. They are rewarded for their dedication and commitment to improving their spelling and language. Those skills will last them far beyond this academic contest.”

With more than 11 million spellers starting at the local level, the Scripps National Spelling Bee is the nation's largest and longest-running educational program of its kind. The competition is administered on a not-for-profit basis by Scripps, based in Cincinnati. The majority of local spelling bee sponsors are daily and weekly newspapers.

The competition was held in the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md. Round-by-round results can be reviewed at the Scripps National Spelling Bee Web site,

Placing second in this year's competition was: Stuti Mishra of West Melbourne, Fla., (representing the Orlando Sentinel).

The national champion receives a $30,000 cash prize along with the trophy from Scripps; a $2,500 U.S. savings bond and complete reference library from Merriam-Webster; a $5,000 scholarship from Sigma Phi Epsilon Educational Foundation; $2,600 of reference works, including the Final Print Edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica, and a lifetime membership to the Britannica Online Premium from Encyclopædia Britannica; and an online language course and Nook Color from Middlebury Interactive Languages.

All students will receive varying amounts of cash prizes depending on where they finish in the academic showcase.

About the Scripps National Spelling Bee

The Scripps National Spelling Bee is the nation's largest and longest-running educational program. The purpose of the Scripps National Spelling Bee is to help students improve spelling, increase their vocabularies, learn concepts and develop correct English usage that will help them all of their lives. Visit for more information about the Scripps National Spelling Bee, which is administered on a not-for-profit basis by The E.W. Scripps Company.

About Scripps

Scripps ( delivers quality journalism and creates valuable marketing environments through television stations, newspapers and a growing menu of digital products and services that now includes social games. Creative and mission-driven employees "give light so the people can find their own way" at 19 television stations in major U.S. markets and at newspapers in 13 markets.

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