Rikers Island’s Most Popular Class: Fashion Theory


A Manhattan-based designer is attempting to challenge some of America’s deepest social problems by teaching what she knows best: fashion.

Anna Lynett Moss, designer of the handbag line Chyiome is teaching a fashion theory course at the women’s prison on Rikers Island as part of New York’s Prison Education Initiative. The Prison Education Initiative provides incarcerated women in the New York area with engaging educational experiences, through various General Education Development (GED) subjects, from reading to mathematics.

The Project Runway alum has been working with the Prison Education Initiative since 2011. While instructing courses in visual art and feminist activism, she works to understand the source of a crime, with the aim of empowering her students both personally and academically.