Kavya Shivashankar – 2009 Spelling Bee champion

13-year-old Kavya Shivashankar from Kansas has won the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Out of nearly 300 contestants, Kavya won by spelling “laodicean” correctly. Definition of “laodicean” is lukewarm or indifferent in religion or politics.

Kavya enjoys practicing her violin, bicycling, swimming, and learning Indian classical dance. She names Nupur Lala, the 1999 Scripps National Spelling Bee champion, as her role model and the inspiration for her spelling career. She has plans for her future career as well: She looks forward to becoming a neurosurgeon. Kavya participated in the 2006, 2007, and 2008 national finals—tying for 10th, 8th, and 4th place, respectively.

Still get a kick out of watching Spelling Bee – Numb Nut or Numnah video from last year.

CBS Julie Chen interviews Kavya Shivashankar