Anyone who has ever labored over a puzzle on a rainy afternoon, take note. Fifteen-year-old Deepika Ravichandran, a resident of East Hampton and a junior at the University High School of Science and Engineering on the campus of the University of Hartford, is the latest Connecticut resident to earn a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records. She has become the fastest in the world to complete the "GWR Hasbro Puzzle,” assembling the unique and challenging jigsaw puzzle at a rapid rate of 18 pieces per minute, completing the puzzle in 13 minutes and seven seconds. Her time beat the previous record of 13 minutes and 14 seconds.
The official Guinness World Records 250-piece jigsaw puzzle is an oval shape and has no guiding picture on the box. Most of the pieces are very similar in appearence.
Although she acknowledges her ability to solve jigsaw puzzles quickly, which was first noticed when she was a toddler, she does not exactly know what makes her successful. “It’s my thing. I have a talent for it,” she told the Press. This was second attempt; on her first attempt at age 12, she missed the world record by 30 seconds.
Part of her world record attempt was to raise funds for her UNICEF high school club. She was hoping to raise enough to provide three meals for a day to 250 (one for each of the puzzle pieces) needy children.
Ravichandran has a strong science, technology, engineering and mathematics background from her time at Hartford’s Annie Fisher STEM magnet school. More than 30 people watched the world record attempt on May 9, including six official witnesses and a videographer who filmed the successful attempt in the University High School's resource room.