By Nicolette Olson
Although Principal Ben Dale is out and about every day checking on classes, getting to know the students and doing just about everything else, there is much that the student body still doesn’t know about him.
Dale is not just an accomplished administrator, and he wants Mira Costa students to know that. He is a music fanatic, a chocolate doughnut lover and a fan of documentaries.
One hobby of Costa’s new principal is creating a significant amount of buzz on campus, however: his role as guitarist in a country music band called Truckstop.
“We have one album on iTunes [entitled "On the Run."] Last year we played at 10 to 12 county fairs and had the opportunity to close the Orange County Fair. Closing the Orange County Fair took a good deal of time, and because of that we were sharper than ever,” Dale said.
Truckstop has another album of material that is soon to be released. It was recorded last year as a live album from the county fairs that the group played at.
“We usually practice in the spring before our summer County Fairs Tour. The name of the band is Truckstop. In the band, I play guitar. The other members are Joe Corcoran [lead guitar], Jesse Anderegg [bass] and Christopher Allis [drums],” Dale said.
In his free time, Dale finds pleasure in listening to music, watching various T.V. shows, and reviewing various movies.
“My latest playlist is “All that Money Wants”, “The Metro” (Acoustic), “Overkill”, “Don’t Dream it’s Over”, “Ready Steady Go”… Also, I just finished this season’s “Deadliest Catch.” My favorite boat is the Northwestern. And, “Inception” — wow – I’m not sure where to start there,” Dale said.
When he is not performing, Dale wants his new student body to know that he wants what’s best for them and to find balance within the school curriculum.
“I want students to challenge themselves academically, but I want them to stay healthy. I want you guys to sleep enough, eat healthy, and have fun. I don’t want to be hypocritical of that, though, so I try my best to do all those things myself. However, I’m a chocolate donut guy,” Dale said.
Dale is currently creating a new system to prevent possible disagreements between faculty and students. The program is named Principal’s Leadership Counseling, and it would help to create an effective manner for students to provide feedback. Student Government President Iktae Park helped create the program with Dale.
“So far this new program sounds good. Dale seems like he’s really been getting to know his students. I always see him walking around the campus and stopping to talk to students,” sophomore Emily Chung said.
Dale has many new goals and ideas for the school, including the implementation of new technology on campus within the next two years.
“An obvious con about Costa is that we do need some facility updates, and we need to get a room that’s a Mac Lab for students to access, since technology is my first priority,” Dale said.
Dale has been active in all of the school’s endeavors so far, from visiting classes on the first day of school to keeping the organization during a lockdown.
“He is an awesome, energetic guy. I didn’t actually meet him directly, but when he came into my classroom he was very friendly and funny,” sophomore Erin Anderson said.
To listen to Principal Dale’s band Truckstop, see here.