The best bee

The National Geographic Bee is hands-down the best of the student academic competitions. The 2012 national finals start today — and our guy is in it.

By our guy, I mean Gopi Ramanathan from Sartell.

I’ve covered lots of student academic competitions over the years but the state geographic bee was always my favorite. These are mostly middle school-aged kids and their knowledge of place is amazing. You might be able to guess your way to the finals of the national Spelling Bee, not the Geographic Bee.

If fact, I double dare you to try today’s quiz.

The finals start this morning. The winner gets a $25,000 college scholarship and a trip to the Galápagos Islands, as well as permanent membership in the National Geographic Society.

As a society, we spend a lot of time rallying around sports teams. How about a collective cheer for a kid who, as the St. Cloud Times reports, “answered eight of nine questions correctly and then qualified for the finals by answering additional questions after 12 students were tied for the final six spots.”

Bonus: Gopi and a few other students spoke to NPR about the competition

Double Bonus: Cottonwood’s Nathan Cornelius won the 2005 Geographic Bee .

— Paul Tosto

  • Kim E

    My score on the “Apprentice” setting was 8397.5. Not too bad, but I can’t imagine doing this at age 13 on stage in front of an audience…and Alex Trebek!

  • Jim Shapiro

    Gopi Ramanathan? I’m not one a yer liberal egg heads, but that sure don’t seem like no American name to me.

    Of course them people are gonna win that kind a test. Real Americans don’t need to know that kind a stuff becuz we live in the greatest country in the world already!

    We’re Number 1!