You can’t miss Mike Politte on the soccer field. The 6-foot 2-inch defender stands tall above most players and exudes a certain confidence while playing.
He’s focused and determined, and when the senior captain steps off the field, none of these traits disappear.
In fact, they are enhanced in all other parts of his life, and particularly, his art.
Politte was born just outside of St. Louis in Washington, Missouri to parents Kay and Tim Politte. Growing up with his two sisters, Rachel and Katie, Politte and his family loved to play sports.
From an early age his athletic ability was quite apparent, as he always had an edge above the rest of his peers. After playing almost every sport offered, he chose to focus only on soccer in high school.
He attended St. Francis Borgia High School and played varsity soccer.
Politte stood out on his high school team. He was named to the All-District team and captain of the varsity squad his senior year.
After a successful high school sports career, Politte began to look at colleges to attend. Although soccer was on his mind, it was his art that took precedence over his school selection.
“When I was looking at colleges, Webster stood out as the perfect fit, because I could have both soccer and design,” Politte said.
To understand how Politte’s love of art and design took precedence over his love and ability in soccer, you have to go back to his childhood.
“I always had an interest in structural design as a kid,” said Politte, “I played with Lincoln Logs and Legos, and as I got older I started transforming that into my drawings and drafting.”
When Politte prepared for college, he knew that his life after school would focus on his love for architecture rather than his soccer career.
However, that did not stop him from putting full effort into everything he did on the field.
Politte is proud that he helped his team win the SLIAC conference title last season.
“Being a part of last year’s team is one of my most proud accomplishments,” he said. “It’s definitely right up there with being named captain of the team this season.”
Politte has made sure his other talents haven’t gone unnoticed as well. His hard work and skill have paid off in his goal to be involved with structural design after graduation.
Politte has spent countless hours in the Webster art building slowly working towards the completion of a new structure, or a fresh drawing.
He even had his prototype drawing for a Gorlok statue selected to be showcased at the school. He hopes to pass the Bachelor of Fine Arts review this week.
“That is by far my biggest art accomplishment. Being eligible for the review means a lot, because it takes a lot to get to that point,”Politte said.
With his senior year already moving by very fast, Politte has a couple things he would like to do before he leaves, such as passing his BFA review, focusing on being a good team leader and taking his team to another successful season.
“As a non-confrontational guy, it’s hard to tell someone what they don’t want to hear,” Politte said, “But on the field, we all coach the guys and everyone helps each other out.”
Politte knows that a successful team comes with more games played, but he’s confident that the chemistry shared by the players will help them throughout the season.
“There’s definitely some organization in the team on and off the field, and our mission as a team is to step up and have a successful season.”
Politte knows his soccer career will most likely end with the conclusion of college, aside from recreational leagues. But he also knows that it will just be the beginning of his other passion.
If he has it his way, he will be involved with architecture and be able to practice his passion for structural design as a profession.
“After being in school for three years, architectural design has just become a huge part of me. If I were in a business school for some reason, I would still find a way to link it back to architecture and design,” Politte said.
Luckily, it seems as if Politte will be surrounded by his passion for art and design for a very long time to come.
“I’m excited to continue my love for design,” he said “I can’t escape it, and I love that fact.”