Nina Barnett '15, a junior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has been selected for the Adams Apprenticeship, which provides high-achieving students with the resources needed to build successful entrepreneurial careers.
Barnett has developed one successful product already: an app called Grooop, which combines the location-tracking features of apps such as Find My Friends with the more personal approach of social media, allowing college students to keep friends informed about their whereabouts and "safety status" as they traverse campus. The app, which launched in July, has been beta-tested on several college campuses across the country and received strong reviews for providing a fun and streamlined way for students to feel safe even when walking alone.
The Adams Apprenticeship, which started in 2015, provides both group coursework and individualized coaching to encourage and support entrepreneurial endeavors by selected students. The program, operated by the UNC Center for Entrepreneurial Studies and funded by the John and Patricia Adams Foundation, has also developed a network of more than 230 alumni, described on their website as "founders, funders and growth executives," who provide networking and mentoring opportunities.
Barnett, who is double-majoring in physics and dramatic arts (and minoring in math), applied for the program earlier this fall. Her success in developing Grooop was likely a factor in her selection, she said, but it was her overall commitment to entrepreneurship that propelled her through the rigorous interview process. She joins an elite group of 86 UNC Chapel Hill students, the first three classes of the program, and will become part of the alumni network upon graduation.
"The Adams Apprenticeship is an incredible opportunity to dive into the entrepreneurial world and kickstart my career through networking trips to San Francisco, New York and around the Triangle," Barnett said. "I am incredibly humbled to have been selected to be an apprentice, and I can't wait to work with the program at UNC and while I am studying abroad in London this spring."