The 14-year-old from San Diego spelled guetapens, a French-derived word that means ambush, snare or trap. Calm and collected throughout, she beat out eight other finalists in the nerve-wracking, brain-busting competition.
Nandipati is an avid reader and coin collector who aspires to become a psychiatrist or neurosurgeon. She plays violin and is fluent in Telugu. She's the 5th consecutive Indian-American winner and 10th in the last 14 years.
Stuti Mishra of West Melbourne, Fla., finished second after misspelling "schwarmerei."
Prizes for winning the 85th Scripps National Spelling Bee include $30,000 in cash, a trophy, a $2,500 savings bond, a $5,000 scholarship, $2,600 in reference works from the Encyclopedia Britannica and an online language course.