Nine of the 11 finalists for this year’s US Spelling Bee contest are Indian-Americans, the organizers said on Monday. The 11 spellers, of which nine are Indian-Americans, will compete for the champion title during the 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee Finals on July 8, a statement from the organizers said, according to news agency PTI.
The 11 finalists are Roy Seligman, 12, from Nassau, The Bahamas; Bhavana Madini, 13, from New York; Sreethan Gajula, 14, from Charlotte, North Carolina; Ashrita Gandhari, 14, from Leesburg, Virginia; Avani Joshi, 13, from Illinois; Zaila Avant-garde, 14, from New Orleans; Vivinsha Veduru, 10, from Texas; Dhroov Bharatia, 12, from Dallas; Vihaan Sibal, 12, from Texas; Akshainie Kamma, 13, from Texas and Chaitra Thummala, 12, from San Francisco.
Over the past 20 years, Indian-Americans have been dominating the Spelling Bee contest even though they comprise only about 1 percent of the US population. The Spelling Bee was cancelled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The US Spelling Bee reflects the dominance young kids from the small ethnic community have had on this prestigious and high-pressure endurance test for more than a decade now.