City Snapshot


Founded in 1853, Washington University in St. Louis faculty have received nine Pulitzers, 24 Nobel Prizes and four posts as Poet Laureate of the United States, among other honors.

By far the biggest Midwestern city on the #EshipCITY road trip, the Greater St. Louis area is home to nearly 3 million people. The gateway to the West where the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers meet, St. Louis was acquired in the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. One hundred years later it was one of the largest cities in the country, and in 1904 was host to the Summer Olympics and the Louisiana Purchase Exposition, better known as the St. Louis World’s Fair.

On the same site—even in the same buildings—of the World’s Fair, Washington University in St. Louis witnessed the debut of ice cream cones, iced tea, Dr. Pepper, and medical and technological innovations such as the X-ray machine, the baby incubator, the electric typewriter and the telegraph. Today, Washington University is known as a leader in research and academics and retains a visionary spirit with the Skandalaris Center for Interdisciplinary Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Dedric Carter, Vice Chancellor for Operations and Technology Transfer at Washington University, came to the Midwest to be a part of St. Louis’ renewal as a city of innovation as well as cultivate the next generation of entrepreneurs. We ended our road trip with a visit to Washington University to meet with Carter and four young entrepreneurs choosing to forego the traditional work model to enthusiastically embrace entrepreneurship.



Our St. Louis Host


Dedric CarterDedric Carter was named vice chancellor for operations and technology transfer at the University of Washington in St. Louis this year after serving as associate provost and associate vice chancellor for innovation and entrepreneurship and professor of engineering practice. Prior to joining the Washington University Dedric served as senior adviser for strategic initiatives in the Office of the Director at the U.S. National Science Foundation He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering and computer science from MIT and a master of business administration degree from MIT Sloan. He earned his doctorate in information systems from Nova Southeastern University. Dedric and his wife, Ebony Carter, MD, MPH, live in St. Louis with their two young daughters Zari and Nia.



Who We Talked With


Andrew Brimer, Abby Cohen, Markey Culver and Cole West.

Washington University graduates, Abby Cohen and Andrew Brimer are co-founders of Sparo Labs, a digital health company based in St. Louis. The company’s flagship product—Wing—is the first FDA-cleared, over-the-counter smartphone sensor for measuring lung function. Cohen and Brimer want Wing to empower asthma patients by helping them manage medications, triggers and symptoms.

Markey Culver is the founder, president, treasurer and director of The Women’s Bakery, which trains and supports women in Rwanda and Tanzania to source local ingredients, bake and sell fortified breads, and ultimately own their own bakery.

A student at Washington University and a native of Detroit, Michigan, Cole West is the president and founder of The Shopping Stop, LLC, an online professional shopping and delivery service run by Wash U students. Students and parents can order groceries, customizable care packages and “Move-In Made Easy” dorm essentials online and have them delivered to a dorm’s doorstep. 



Fun Facts About St. Louis


  • The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra is the nation’s second oldest symphony orchestra.
  • The Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis features the largest collection of mosaics in the world- with 41 million pieces of tile.
  • in 1904, the city hosted both the Summer Olympics and the World’s Fair where iced tea, the ice cream cone, and Dr. Pepper were introduced.
  • The tallest monument built in the United States, the Gateway Arch in St. Louis was completed October 28, 1965. It is 630 feet tall and 630 feet wide at its base.
  • Anheuser-Busch brewery in St. Louis, Missouri is the largest beer producing plant in the nation.
  • Saint Louis University received a formal charter from the state of Missouri in 1832, making it the oldest University west of the Mississippi.
  • St. Louis was the site of the demonic possession incident that inspired the book, and later the movie, “The Exorcist.”
  • Panera, originally called St. Louis Bread Company, was founded in St. Louis. In St. Louis it is still exclusively called the St. Louis Bread Company, or commonly “Bread Co.” 
  • The St. Louis baseball team played their first season as the Brown Stockings, 16 seasons as the Browns, and one season as the Perfectos before settling on the name Cardinals. 
  • The Anheuser-Busch Clydesdales were originally a gift from August Busch to his father marking the end of the prohibition.