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South Jordan 14-year-old Surya Kapu places third in Scripps National Spelling Bee

Posted at 9:57 PM, Jun 01, 2023

SALT LAKE CITY — A 14-year-old from South Jordan made the Beehive State proud on Thursday night. Surya Kapu placed third at the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

He came so close to bringing home Utah’s first title. But after 13 rounds of competition in Washington DC, Surya stumped on one word.

He received a special standing ovation from the crowd after his last word. This was his second time in the finals, after coming fifth place last year. Making his school and teachers at American Preparatory Academy, so proud of him too.

“It’s a long process and he’s worked really really hard to get to this point,” said Mason Paxman, Junior High Assistant Director at American Preparatory Academy. “We’re really really proud of Surya for making it this far because it’s not easy and he’s put a lot of time into it.”

Hoping it inspires other kids to dream big and work hard to achieve those goals.

“It helps everyone else in the class because they will look up to him. Not just to do the same, but try to get better in life,” said Dr. Henry Caceres, Surya’s band teacher.

We are so proud of Surya for coming this far. All of us were here cheering for him and we can’t wait to see everything else that he accomplishes. Good luck, Surya!