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Dr. Temple Grandin to speak Jan. 27 at TJC

Dr. Temple Grandin — internationally renowned professor, best-selling author, animal behaviorist and autism self-advocate — will speak Saturday, Jan. 27, at Tyler Junior College.

She will deliver two talks in the Apache Rooms, located in Rogers Student Center on the TJC central campus.

Discussion times and topics:
• 10 a.m. — Cattle Handling
• 1:30 p.m. — Developing Strengths and Getting Jobs for Individuals Facing Autism

Tickets are free for anyone with a college or school ID or $40 per presentation for those without school IDs. All proceeds benefit Elijah’s Retreat, which was established in Jacksonville in 2009 as a sanctuary for families facing autism.

This event is being offered jointly by the TJC STEM Club and Elijah’s Retreat.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Dr. Grandin to our campus,” said Dr. Rebecca Owens, TJC engineering and physical sciences department chair and professor. “She is vocal about the tremendous role educators played in her life, so TJC is a perfect place to have her speak. I am also excited to spread the word about Elijah’s Retreat and the work they are doing for the autistic community.”

Tickets can be reserved at https://elijahsretreat.com/events/temple-grandin-symposium/.

About Dr. Temple Grandin
An extraordinary inspiration for autistic children and their parents, she is the subject of the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning HBO film, “Temple Grandin,” starring Claire Danes and Julia Ormond, and she was also one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in 2010.

Diagnosed with autism when she was 3 years old, Dr. Grandin’s mother rejected her doctor’s advice to institutionalize her, and provided her with intensive speech therapy, a structured home and a nurturing school environment.

Later, with encouragement from her high school science teacher and an aunt who ran a ranch in Arizona, Dr. Grandin pursued a career in animal science. With unique abilities to think visually and recall small details she began to design humane livestock-handling equipment, eventually revolutionizing the industry.

Today, over half the cattle in North America are handled in a system she designed. Other professional activities include developing animal welfare guidelines for the meat industry and consulting with McDonalds, Wendy’s International, Burger King and other major companies.

Dr. Grandin has authored over 400 articles in both scientific journals and livestock periodicals on animal handling, welfare, and facility design. In her book, “Thinking in Pictures,” she makes the case that the world needs people on the autism spectrum: visual thinkers, pattern thinkers and verbal thinkers.

In a recent interview, she said, “I read in the paper that Google was starving for talent. Well, these geeky, quirky kids, we need to get them interested in science. They’re not going to get interested if they’re not exposed to it.”

Of her many books, “Animals in Translation” and “Animals Make Us Human” were both on the New York Times best-seller list.

Dr. Grandin’s numerous awards include honorary doctorates from McGill University, University of Illinois, and Duke University. She is a fellow of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, and a past member of the board of the Autism Society of America.

She earned her Bachelor of Arts at Franklin Pierce College, her Master of Science in animal science at Arizona State University, and her Ph.D. in animal science from the University of Illinois. She is a professor of animal science at Colorado State University.

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