Nashua student advances to national spelling bee semifinalsBy KIMBERLY HOUGHTON
Union Leader Correspondent
May 27. 2015 9:07PM
NASHUA — The young Nashua student competing in the 2015 Scripps National Spelling Bee has advanced to the semifinals.
On Tuesday, Arushi Kalpande, 13, successfully completed a written preliminary test necessary to secure a spot in the second round of preliminaries on Wednesday.
During the second oral round of preliminaries, Kalpande, a seventh-grader from Nashua Catholic Regional Jr. High School, correctly spelled the word ’topography.’
Later during Wednesday’s competition, she successfully spelled the word ’nonagesimal’ during the third round of preliminaries.
At the end of the day on Wednesday, she had placed within the top 49 of 285 spellers, allowing her to advance to the semifinals taking place Thursday morning at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland.
This is Kalpande’s second attempt at obtaining the title of America’s spelling bee champion. During the 2014 Scripps National Spelling Bee she tied for 47th place and missed the semifinals by just one point.
“My goal this year is to at least make it to the semifinals and hopefully to the finals,” she told the New Hampshire Union Leader before heading to the nation’s capital on Sunday. “They limit the finals to 12 spellers.”
The 88th annual spelling bee tournament is being aired on ESPN2 and ESPN on Thursday, with the semifinals taking place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the finals beginning at 8 p.m.
Kalpande, the winner of the New Hampshire Union Leader Spelling Bee earlier this year, said previously that she is both nervous and excited for the national competition.
Her future endeavors include a possible career as a physicist. She studies Marathi and Hindi, and plays the violin in the Nashoba Youth Orchestra.
When she isn’t spelling, Kalpande plays the violin and studies classical Indian dance at Triveni School of Dance in Brookline, Mass. Her hobbies include writing and drawing.