Temple Grandin

March 16, 2021 |

The Harding University American Studies Institute Distinguished Lecture Series featured Temple Grandin, American doctor of animal science and bestselling author. The lecture titled “Developing Talents: Utilizing the Skills of Different Kinds of Minds” highlighted her own experience with autism spectrum disorders and her professional career. She spoke on how to nurture and turn talents and special interests into paid work, jobs that are particularly suited to individuals on the autism spectrum, and offered firsthand accounts of job experiences and advice from individuals representing a broad range of careers particularly suited for high-functioning individuals on the autism spectrum. The event was open to the public and followed by a book signing featuring Grandin’s books. All COVID-19 guidelines for social distancing and safety were followed.

“In my 20s I didn’t know that I thought differently. I thought everyone was a visual thinker. It was kind of a revelation for me when I found out there are verbal thinkers and math thinkers. We have to start looking at how these skills are complementary and that they bring different valuable things to the table.”

Dr. Temple Grandin

Designer of livestock handling facilities and professor of animal science at Colorado State University, Dr. Temple Grandin has designed facilities across the globe that are credited with reducing the animal stress during handling and improving animal welfare. She obtained her bachelor’s at Franklin Pierce College, her master’s in animal science at Arizona State University, and her Ph.D. in animal science from the University of Illinois. She is a New York Times bestselling author and TED Talk lecturer. In 2010 Time Magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people, in 2017 she was inducted into the Women’s Hall of Fame, and in 2018 she was made a fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Her latest book, Calling All Minds, was a New York Times bestseller for middle school students. Her life story has also been made into an HBO movie titled "Temple Grandin, starring Claire Danes," which won seven Emmy awards and a Golden Globe. The movie shows her life as a teenager and how she started her career.

In a recent TED Talk Grandin said, “The world needs different kinds of minds to work together. … I’m passionate that the things I do are going to make the world a better place. I get satisfaction out of seeing stuff that makes real change in the real world. We need a lot more of that and a lot less abstract stuff.”

Topics: ASI 2020s ASI2021

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