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Welcome to the UNICORN Angel Network

The UNICORN Angel Network is a platform for North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM) supporters and alumni to find, collaborate with, and invest in startups founded by NCSSM students and alumni. Powered by IDEA Fund Partners, one of the Southeast’s most active seed and early stage venture investors, the network provides a platform for NCSSM alumni and supporters to find, collaborate with, and support NCSSM-affiliated startups. The network will publish an email newsletter to share original content and news about NCSSM-related startups, as well as information, events, and news about Unicorn entrepreneurs. More information about the network is available on our website.

The UNICORN Angel Network is not affiliated with the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. IDEA Fund Partners is working with students and alumni to run the Network as an independent activity. Content in this newsletter is curated by Lawton Ives ’17. Lawtown is an incoming first year at UNC-Chapel Hill where he plans to major in Business and Analytics & Statistics. If you have any questions or comments about this newsletter, please contact him.

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Alumni Spotlight:
In every issue of the UNICORN Angel Network Newsletter we plan on highlighting an entrepreneur NCSSM student or alumnus and their latest venture.

Ryan O'Donnell '11
Co-Founder & CEO of EmployUs

In this issue, we caught up with Ryan O’Donnell ’11, who has had a great deal of start-up experience in his young career.  While working as a recruiter after graduating from NC State, O’Donnell found that the recruiting industry was need of drastic change.  With this inspiration, he founded EmployUs, a software company that helps companies hire more referrals in 2014, where he currently serves as CEO.  They have raised $1.5 million in venture capital to date and are growing quickly.

Building on an impactful experience leading the food drive at NCSSM that broke the Guinness World Record for the largest food drive in one location over 24 hours O’Donnell founded a non-profit, Pennies 4 Progress, while he was a student at NC State.  Pennies 4 Progress helped people donate to causes that they are passionate about and founding it taught O’Donnell a great deal about partnerships, teams, and fundraising.

Read the full interview here.
Unicorns in the News
Have news you'd like to share or a company that we should know about? Let us know by emailing
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