RMA student wins spelling bee

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Krutik Patel, an eighth-grade student from Rocky Mount Academy, wins the Scripps National Advancement Spelling Bee contest hosted by Delta Center for Life Development Inc. and The Teacher Education Program of N.C. Wesleyan College Monday at N.C. Wesleyan College.


Staff Writer

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Monday night’s Scripps National Advancement Spelling Bee held at the Dunn Center ended as a nail-biter, but three boys ruled the night in a competition in which girls are the usual victors.

The competition ended after 26 rounds with Krutik Patel, an eighth-grade student from Rocky Mount Academy, proclaimed as champion after successfully spelling the word “egregious.” Patel won after 10 rounds between him and his closest competition, Janzen Haynes, a fourth-grade student from Swift Creek Elementary School. Brian Lin, a fifth-grade student from Cooper’s Elementary School, held his own against the two spelling titans for five rounds before succumbing to defeat in round 17 with the word “anomaly.”

“This is the longest competition we have ever had,” said Edith Penny, chairwoman of the board of directors for Delta Center for Life Development, a local nonprofit organization that co-sponsored the event with the Teacher Education Program of N.C. Wesleyan College. “These kids were really prepared. We only had 300 words ready for the competition and were in the high 200s when it finally ended.”

This year’s spelling bee featured 45 third- through eighth-grade students representing 23 area schools including Rocky Mount Academy, Rocky Mount Preparatory School, North East Carolina Prep, West Edgecombe Middle School and 19 Nash-Rocky Mount elementary and middle schools. 

Patel, 14, said he is excited about his first place win.

“I worked really hard on this and it paid off,” Patel said.

The winners are taking home several prizes donated by Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Encyclopedia Britannica Online, Jay Sugarman and Amazon.com.

As a result of his win, Patel took home a trophy and a year-long subscription to the online versions of the Merriam-Webster dictionary and Encyclopedia Britannica Online. He also won a weeklong trip for he and his family to go to the Washington D.C. area as Patel competes in the Scripps National Spelling Bee from May 28-June 3. 

Haynes, 10, takes home a trophy and a $25 Amazon gift card. He will also receive a hardback copy of a Merriam-Webster Dictionary containing 472,000 words, which Haynes said he hopes to memorize before returning to next year’s competition.

Brian Lin also won an Amazon gift card and a trophy and some added free-time.

“I spent a lot of time studying for this,” Lin said. “I’m not sure what I am going to do with my time now.”