By Brian Orthman
(Whetstone Staff Writer)

Politically active freshman Tanner Polce says that he likes being the guy people can go to.

“I like being that guy,” Polce said. “That go-to guy.”

After acting as SGA vice president this semester, he will be the organization’s president next semester.

Polce, who will be graduating early with a double major in Political Science and International Affairs, has been an exchange student in Germany.

Although born in West Virginia and raised in Oakland, Md., Polce says he has an international mindset.

“I view the world in a very European view,” he said. “Politically, social, everything about it. Europe has really transformed how I look at politics and policy and myself as an individual.”

Nolan Canter, a long-time friend of Polce, was convinced that he was a German exchange student.

“I first met [Polce] at a soccer clinic,” Canter said. “He was a skinny blonde kid who played with an unusual style that none of us had ever seen before. He was extremely noisy and deliberate with his actions. We soon came to the conclusion that he must be a German exchange student. However, by the end of the clinic he had confided in a select few of us his true nationality.”

Canter is one of the few friends that Polce says that he trusts to lean on.

Polce did not always have it easy.

Growing up, his parents divorced shortly after he was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, which swells the lower gastrointestinal tract. He also is fighting colon cancer, for which he receives chemotherapy.

“In my childhood and early teens, I was not the person I am today,” Polce said. “I was very black and white. Sometimes I’m down, but rarely people see me down, which I pride myself on. But when they see me like that I shift into that black and white alternative.”

Polce’s passion and energy allows him to do all of the things on and off campus.

When he is frustrated, he has productive ways to vent.

“Golf is my way to vent,” he said. “Say I get a bad test grade, I go hit golf balls.”

“Tanner might be one of the single most driven individuals I have met thus far,” said freshman Bryan Zarou, a friend of Polce.

Politics play a big role in Polce’s life. He works in the office of Sen. Tom Carper.

“Eventually, I would love to run for congressman or senator,” he said. “I would not want to be president, and my theory on the presidency is that I would hate it. Politically, he is not the most important person in someone’s life.”

After Wesley, Polce hopes to attend law school and study constitutional law, and then jump into politics as either a lobbyist or work for one of his senator connections as a professional staffer or legislative aid.

“My political views are ever-changing,” Polce said. “I am a constitutionalist, though. I think that document that our founding fathers left us in one of the best.”

One of Polce’s favorite quotes was told to him by his father: “Person one watches things happen, person two says what happened, and person three makes it happen. They create it.”

“I always want to be that creator,” Polce said. “And by damned I will never ask what happened, and I will never watch what happened.”