Indian-American Student Wins National Spelling Bee With The Word ‘Koinonia’

Indian-American Student Wins National Spelling Bee With The Word ‘Koinonia’

June 1, 2018
Besting 515 competitors from across the United States, a 14-year-old Indian-American student won the 91st Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Karthik Nemmani, who hails from McKinney, Texas, became this year’s champion after correctly spelling the word “koinonia” on Thursday night. According to Merriam-Webster, the winning word means “Christian fellowship or body of believers.”
The three-day national competition, which started on Tuesday, was down to just 16 remaining competing students by Thursday.
The day of the final showdown was especially tough, with the competitors spelling out words like “lophophytosis,” “pseudepigrapha,” “propylaeum,” and “ooporphyrin.”
Subscribe to
NextShark's Newsletter

A daily dose of Asian America's essential stories, in under 5 minutes.

Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories to your inbox daily for free.

Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive.

Nemmani’s road to victory had him spelling words such as “grognard,” “ankyloglossia,” and “miarolitic.”
“This has been a dream come true,” Karthik was quoted by BuzzFeed as saying.
The last round of the competition saw Nemmani against his hometown rival, 12-year-old Naysa Modi, another Indian-American student who is also from Texas.
Modi, who successfully spelled difficult words like “videlicet,” “succiniferous,” and “forçat,” failed to spell the wordbewusstseinslage correctly, costing her the victory.
The word means “a state of consciousness or a feeling devoid of sensory components.”
Scripps, which has been holding the national competition in the U.S. for 91 years, awarded Nemmani a cash prize of $40,000 and a trophy.
The spelling bee champ is also set to receive a $2,500 reference library from Merriam-Webster and a three-year online membership to Encyclopedia Britannica.
An overnight star, Nemmani will soon appear on television shows “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” and “Live! with Kelly and Ryan.”
Featured Image via YouTube / ESPN
      Ryan General

      Ryan General is a Senior Reporter for NextShark




      Many people might not know this, but NextShark is a small media startup that runs on no outside funding or loans, and with no paywalls or subscription fees, we rely on help from our community and readers like you.

      Everything you see today is built by Asians, for Asians to help amplify our voices globally and support each other. However, we still face many difficulties in our industry because of our commitment to accessible and informational Asian news coverage.

      We hope you consider making a contribution to NextShark so we can continue to provide you quality journalism that informs, educates, and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way. Thank you for supporting NextShark and our community.

      © 2023 NextShark, Inc. All rights reserved.