Tampa student wins National Geographic Bee in D.C.

- Rishi Nair beat out 2.5 million other students to claim the 28th National Geographic Bee title in Washington D.C.  He's a standout 6th grader at Williams Magnet Middle School in Tampa. 

"We were nervous, in a good way, because we wanted him to succeed and we wanted him to know what it
felt like to win after all the hard work he put in however now were ecstatic," said Assistant Principal Robert Bhoolai

"I've never seen anything like him, he's just an amazing kid and his depth of knowledge is phenomenal," said teacher Monica Dutzar. 

The Geography Bee tests wide ranging knowledge, beyond just places on a map. It may not have the cachet of the spelling bee, but some say it's actually tougher.

"They don't spell something, they don't have that memorization. It's absolutely being able to understand the logistics of where mountains and rivers are, why countries change and how they formed, and when they changed," said Dutzar.

"I'd like to thank my mom for everything she did since I was born," said Nair, following the win.

He already has his victory lap planned out.

"My parents promised me an iPhone SE, a trip to Zurich and Paris…and a golden retriever puppy," he added.

Up Next:

Up Next

  • Tampa student wins National Geographic Bee in D.C.
  • Woman dead in Clearwater drive-by shooting
  • Over 300 fall ill on Royal Caribbean cruise
  • Dog shot in face expected to make full recovery
  • 1 dead, 1 injured in motorcycle accident
  • Police: Woman calls 911, confesses to murdering wife
  • Driver identified in fatal motorcycle accident
  • More than 200 cruise passengers fall ill with stomach virus
  • Woman wakes up to intruder in her bedroom
  • Distressed newborn otter brought to Clearwater Marine Aquarium