Two Indian-origin students in the U.S. have won the top slots at the prestigious Scripps National Spelling Bee championship this year.
Snigdha Nandipati of San Diego, California defeated Stuti Mishra of West Melbourne, Florida to clinch this year’s title.
Earlier, three Indian-origin students had won all the top three slots at this year’s National Geographic Bee geography quiz, yet another prestigious nationwide tournament that saw nearly 4 million students participate.
In the spelling bee, in which participants show their mastery over the English language by spelling difficult words right, there were three Indian-origin competitors in the final nine.
People of Indian origin comprise about 1% of the U.S. population, but are considered the most advanced community by metrics such as annual income, education etc..
Nearly all the Indian-origin emigrants in the U.S. trace their roots to highly-qualified Indian professionals who left an economically backward third-world nation in the 1970s and 80s in search of better opportunities.
The wave of technologists and doctors was further reinforced in the 1990s and 2000s by the IT era. A large number of U.S. companies opened operations in India, leading to considerable two-way movement of professionals.
Many attribute the success of young Indian-origin students to the academic focus of their parents — who were more likely than not to have been academic high-achievers as well.