The following article was written by Adam Daniel in the TIDE Newsletter:
Although Ben is not one of our senior students, he is our highlight student this week. Ben is a returning part-time student for the past 7 years. He has been with TIDE Academy since the begging and completes 1/3 of his school year here. Ben is a competitive swimmer, surfer, guitarist, an anchor on TIDE News and recently played the part of Grimsby in The Little Mermaid. Over the term, I have had the chance to get to know Ben both as a student and on a personal level. His humility, humor, dedication and persistence are qualities I’ve seen contribute to Ben’s academic and personal successes. I sat down with Ben to ask him about his life of competitive swimming, his recent success with open water competitions and transitioning between his school in Tamarindo and Colorado.
1. How do you juggle being a highly competitive swimmer and school back in the US?
Swimming takes up lots of time. You must put in a lot of time training, working out and competing in meets. I manage my schoolwork along with it. It means my days are busy but that’s part of doing what you love.
2. You recently won an open water competition here in Costa. How was that different than the competitions back home?
The competition here was very different but so much fun. Normally in competitions, you swim against 10-20 swimmers but in the competition held in Playa Hermosa I raced against 180 swimmers. I loved swimming in the ocean!
Ben was one of the younger competitors of the competition and won 1st place in all age groups.
3. How do you find the transition from Colorado to TIDE Academy?
Going from TIDE Academy to my school in the states is sometimes challenging. At TIDE Academy I have 5 students in my class and in Colorado, I have 350 kids in my grade; 1830 kids in the school. The subjects, however, are easy to roll into because I’m doing the same work here as in the states. I follow the school’s outcomes to ensure I am attaining the same subject content and my teachers are always willing to personally help me in my learning. This is one of the positive aspects of having small class sizes.
4. What life skills help you in competing and balancing academics and competitive athletics?
Dedication and hard work.
Ben is a man of few words, but dedication and hard work are most definitely habits of mind that have helped in his success.
We wish Ben and his siblings Abby and Jacob a successful transition back to Colorado and look forward to welcoming them back in the fall of 2019.