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Looking to help refugees, this design student created jackets that transform into tents and sleeping bags

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Larry Johnson
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Sitting in class discussing the latest fashion shows by day and scrolling through the news coverage of the refugees pouring out of Syria at night, Angela Luna felt a big disconnect between what she was studying and what was happening in the outside world.A student at Parsons School of Design, Luna considered switching majors to study something more humanities-based where she could develop the skills to make a difference, but she was already three years into her degree.

"My skill set has always been with creativity and design," Luna told Business Insider.

"In the end, yeah, I am going to school for fashion and I thought it could be more interesting and could actually be a more innovative way to create a solution if I use my skills in design.

"After speaking with humanitarian workers, Luna quickly discovered another benefit to staying in the fashion industry: that's where the money is.By looking through images of refugees sleeping on sidewalks, reading interviews, and speaking with humanitarian agencies, Luna identified the most prominent challenges faced by refugees that she could address through design, such as the need for warmth and protection from the elements.

Luna then applied her research to develop a collection of seven pieces for her senior thesis design project at Parsons, simultaneously establishing her apparel company ADIFF, with the tagline "design intervention for global issues.

"Globally, fashion is a $1.2 trillion industry.

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