Nikil, a Powhatan sixth grader, outlasted 15 competitors over a span of 23 rounds to capture first place in the Regional Spelling Bee over Spring Break. We caught up with him to ask a few questions about the competition:


One common misconception is that there isn’t necessarily a word to spell to win it all. Nikil won in the vocabulary round, with the winning word being ‘karma.’

[kahr-muh] noun
1. Hinduism, Buddhism. action, seen as bringing upon oneself inevitable results, good or bad, either in this life or in a reincarnation: in Hinduism one of the means of reaching Brahman.

2. Theosophy. the cosmic principle according to which each person is rewarded or punished in one incarnation according to that person’s deeds in the previous incarnation.

3. fate; destiny.

4. the good or bad emanations felt to be generated by someone or something (reference:

“A very fitting word for such a wonderful, nice and hard working young man,” says Mrs. Scarborough, Head of School. “Karma was the perfect word for Nikil to receive as his final word in the competition. He exhibits good karma each day at school and shares it with his classmates and teachers which is a reflection upon his family and the values they have instilled in him. Powhatan is lucky to have Nikil as a student!”


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Powhatan School speller national bee-bound

S-p-e-l-l-i-n-g champ!