By Valerie Miller, Scripps
Ananya Vinay, a 12-year-old speller from Fresno, California, is the champion of the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee, presented by Kindle (Amazon).
Vinay earned the title in round 36 when she correctly spelled “marocain,” which is defined as “a dress fabric that is made with a warp of silk or rayon and a filling of other yarns and is similar to but heavier than canton crepe.”
This was Vinay’s second time participating in the National Finals. She tied for 172nd place in 2016.
Rich Boehne, chairman, president and CEO of The E.W. Scripps Company, awarded Vinay the engraved championship trophy moments before ESPN signed off from its national broadcast of the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee.
“Ananya proved her depth of knowledge of root words and word origins to master round after round of some of the most challenging words in the English language,” said Boehne. “The entire week was an impressive showcase of talented students who have dedicated so much time and effort to this skill. They exude commitment and true grit. Scripps takes great pride in serving as steward of the nation’s largest and longest-running educational event.”
Vinay represents sponsor The Fresno Bee and is in 6th grade at Fugman Elementary School in Fresno, California.
The competition began Tuesday with 291 spellers who advanced to the Scripps National Spelling Bee after beating the odds to reach this level. They are among the top 0.000026 percent of more than 11 million students who participated in spelling bees held in classrooms, schools and locally sponsored events around the country.
Bee Week took place in the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor. Round-by-round results are available at spellingbee.com.
The champion receives:
- From Scripps: a $40,000 cash prize and the Scripps National Spelling Bee engraved trophy.
- From Kindle: a Kindle e-reader.
- From Merriam-Webster: a $2,500 US savings bond and a complete reference library.
- From Encyclopædia Britannica: $400 of reference works including a 1768 Encyclopædia Britannica Replica Set Deluxe Edition and a three-year membership to Britannica Online Premium.
As the Scripps National Spelling Bee Champion, Vinay will begin first thing Friday a media tour with numerous national networks, entertainment programs and digital platforms including “Good Morning America,” “Today Show,” Wall Street Journal, “Live with Kelly and Ryan,” CNN and “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” She also will visit Wall Street to be a guest of the New York Stock Exchange to ring the opening bell next week.
Rohan Rajeev of Edmond, Oklahoma, representing The Oklahoman in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, placed second in the competition and will receive $30,000. Mira Dedhia of Western Springs, Illinois, representing Commonwealth Edison in Chicago, Illinois, placed third in the competition and will receive $20,000.
As the presenting sponsor for the Scripps National Spelling Bee, Kindle provided a Kindle Paperwhite for all spellers competing in the National Finals. Kindle also provided an interactive corner during Bee Week for spellers and their families to enjoy and celebrate words, spelling and reading.
Both internationally recognized brands share in the belief that reading is critically important to a child’s lifelong achievement.
For this year’s program, the Scripps National Spelling Bee used Kindle technology in the creation of the word lists for school-level study materials. Kindle’s technology such as FreeTime, Word Wise and Vocabulary Builder help build confidence for students to take on more complex books and learn new and challenging words along the way. These enhancements provide for an improved reading experience that leads to greater comprehension, a stronger vocabulary and a better, uninterrupted reading experience for young readers.
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 their spelling, increase their vocabularies, learn concepts and develop correct English usage that will help them all of their lives. Visit spellingbee.com for more information about the Scripps National Spelling Bee, administered on a not-for-profit basis by The E.W. Scripps Company.
The E.W. Scripps Company serves audiences and businesses through a growing portfolio of television, radio and digital media brands. Scripps is one of the nation’s largest independent TV station owners, with 33 television stations in 24 markets and a reach of nearly one in five U.S. households. It also owns 34 radio stations in eight markets. Founded in 1878, Scripps has held for decades to the motto, “Give light and the people will find their own way.”
Sponsor Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, and Alexa are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon. For more information, visit www.amazon.com/about.