Animal scientist Grandin awarded honorary DVM by Kansas State

Kansas State University (KSU) College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) awarded an honorary veterinary degree to Temple Grandin, PhD, world-renowned advocate for autism and the humane treatment of animals.

KSU presented Temple Grandin, PhD, with an honorary DVM degree
Kansas State University (KSU) presented Temple Grandin, PhD, with an honorary DVM degree. From left: Dr. Bonnie Rush, Hodes family dean of the KSU College of Veterinary Medicine; Dr. James Roush, associate dean for academic programs and student success; Grandin; and Richard Linton, PhD, KSU president. (Photo courtesy of KSU)

Dr. Bonnie Rush, Hodes family dean of KSU CVM, presented the DVM degree to Grandin at the veterinary college's commencement ceremony May 12. Grandin also served as commencement speaker.

"(Grandin) is the world's foremost leader in food animal welfare and handling, and she has made significant contributions to the welfare of many other species," Dr. Rush said. "She has had a tremendous positive influence on animal welfare practices within the livestock industry."

Kansas State University President Richard Linton said that while Grandin has received many honorary PhD degrees, this is the first time she has been presented with an honorary DVM degree.

In her acceptance speech, Grandin said her autism precluded her from attending veterinary school because she was unable to do higher math, thus unable to satisfy the prerequisites for a veterinary degree.

"I'm really honored and at this stage of my life right now—I'm way past retirement age, so the thing I want to do is inspire the next generation to go out and change things," Grandin said.

"I feel I've had impact in my career by helping promote fear-free methods at veterinary clinics and other animal-handling situations," she continued. "I always like to figure out simple, straightforward things that people can do, so we need all the different kinds of minds and skills to solve problems."

Grandin is a professor of animal science at Colorado State University College of Animal Science and renowned for advancing humane methods of livestock handling and transportation. She is also known for helping eliminate the stigma associated with autism. In 2010, Grandin was among Time Magazine's 100 most influential people in the hero category.