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Nicholas Monahan takes the top prize for the third year in a row in Idaho's National Geographic Bee.

March 31, 2017
Writer: Brandon Isle

An eighth grader from McCall is the Idaho State National Gegraphic Bee champion for the third time in a row.

Friday, March 31, Nicholas Monahan was crowned the victor again at the State Bee on the campus of BYU-Idaho. 

For winning, Monahan received $100, an atlas, a medal and a trip to Washington, D.C. to compete for a $50,000 scholarship during the National Championship at the National Geographic Society Headquarters May 14-17, 2017. Ethan Dreher of Kuna got second (75, GIFT FROM BOOK STORE) place and won $75 and a bag from the BYU-Idaho University Store. Eric DeHaas came in third and received $50 and a bag from the bookstore.

Monahan told BYU-Idaho Radio his trick to winning, "In the past few weeks I've been studying about five hours a day, maybe a little more," he said. "When I go to the National Competition, I study all day."

The National Geographic Channel and Nat Geo WILD will broadcast the championship at 8 p.m. EDT May 19, 2017.

In his first year to the National Championship in 2015, Monahan ended in 7th place. Only the top 10 of the 54 contestants are placed. In 2016, Nicholas did not place in the top 10.

He told us what advice he has for other students who want to participate in the geography bee, "Work hard. You have to use your free time at home away from school," he said. "You don't really learn that much geography in school."