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Sukanya Roy: 2011 National Spelling Bee Champion

By Murali Kamma Email By Murali Kamma
July 2011
Sukanya Roy: 2011 National Spelling Bee Champion


WHY: Won the 2011 National Spelling Bee championship. Sukanya, aged 14, spelt ‘cymotrichous’ (definition: having wavy hair) correctly to take home the trophy and $30,000 in cash, apart from savings bonds and reference books totaling over $10,000. Arvind Mahankali, aged 11, tied for third place.

WORTH knowing: Sukanya, who speaks fluent Bengali, visits India every summer— although this year she went to Panama to study its rainforests. A pianist in her school’s orchestra, Sukanya is keen on ecology, hiking and skating, and international relations.

WHERE: Sukanya went to Abington Heights Middle School in Pennsylvania’s Scranton area, and begins ninth grade this fall.

WHAT she said: “It’s hard to find the words.…My heart started pounding, I guess. I couldn’t believe it.”

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