Bahamian Student Makes History at Scripps National Spelling Bee
Lyford Cay International School eagerly waits to watch one of their very own compete live on REVTV this Thursday.
Roy Seligman a 12 year-old, 8th grade student of Lyford Cay International School will make history as the first Bahamian to appear in the Scripps National Spelling Bee Finals on Thursday July 8th at 8 PM. Seligman is a 3-time B.A.I.S.S. Spelling Bee Champion who has participated in competitive spelling since the 4th grade. He has already made history this year by being the first Bahamian to make it past the quarter-final round since the event’s inception in 1925. He shared that he feels honored to represent both his school and country on a global stage. “It’s a privilege and an honor. The Scripps National Spelling Bee is very popular in The Bahamas. Advancing to the highest levels of the competition has been my dream since I started spelling competitively. I’m proud of how the competition has gone so far and happy that I have been able to put a smile on the faces of many people in our country. I will continue to do my best to make them proud.”
Mr. O’Niel Bain, Marketing and Communications Director for Lyford Cay International School hailed Roy’s accomplishments stating, “The entire Lyford Cay International School community is so proud of Roy for his historic accomplishments. We are excited that many more Bahamians will be able to support him by tuning in to the Finals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee thanks to REV.”
The Scripps National Spelling Bee is scheduled to air on ESPNU REVTV Channel 732, part of one of REV’s premium packages. REV chose to air the spelling bee on REVTV Channel 205 to ensure that all REVTV subscribers throughout The Bahamas would be able to support Roy as he takes the stage.
Two hundred and nine contestants from countries including The Bahamas, Ghana, United States, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Japan, Canada and Europe have competed thus far but Roy has distinguished himself as the only international contestant to make it to the finals.
While this is Seligman’s second year competing in The Scripps National Spelling Bee, it is his third time qualifying for the event. Due to COVID-19 restrictions in 2020 he was unable to travel to Washington, and was naturally a bit disappointed. Nevertheless, he decided to use the additional time to refine his spelling skills even further. Roy intensified his quest and ramped-up his training by participating in online competitions, networking with international spellers, feasting on the myriad of word banks developed on Quizlets, posting hundreds of sticky notes around his room, ferociously reading books to expand his vocabulary, setting his own personal study time and remaining motivated throughout.
Roy’s spelling coach Katina Seymour credits Roy’s tenacity and personal initiative with much of his success thus far, stating that he has been ‘driving the bus’ as it relates to his training, particularly during the onset of the COVID-19 crisis. “Roy wants to do well, so he set personal goals that we all supported. It did my heart well to know that this young man continues to love learning…The result you see today is a young man who loves what he does. He enjoys learning about new words. We have rich conversations about where words come from, ways we can synthesize them, connect them and we even compete against each other – this is what makes the training sessions rewarding for both of us.”
Roy expressed his gratitude to his parents and coach for supporting his journey in critical ways. “I am very appreciative of all the support and encouragement that I have received from Mrs. Seymour, and my parents Arthur & Nuala Seligman. This has really helped me to remain motivated and focused. I now enjoy learning new words and it has become one of my favorite past-times.”
The Scripps National Spelling Bee is being held at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort on July 8th 2021 from 8pm to 10pm. Viewers can find the full REVTV Channel Guide at www.rev.bs.