|Claire Danes with the real Temple Grandin|
This sets her on a path of scientific inquiry - because she "sees in pictures" abstract thought is something really difficult (like learning a language or creative writing). But the absolutes of science appeal to her nature and disposition, particularly because of the autism. She continues after college at the University of Arizona studying animal husbandry and life sciences. She is in a stockyard when she starts wondering why some cattle moo louder than others, and starts studying their behavior. Because she can relate images together, she pieces together reasons for different cattle behavior, like moving in curves and not wanting to walk downhill. She can relate to what scares them because she's particularly sensitive to sights, sounds, and textures. She tricks her way into the stockyard for her masters thesis, and when she graduates she's asked to re-design a cattle "dip" (where they dip the cattle in a debugging liquid). The old designs had a high mortality rate (from drowning) and would take more time and more people to run them than the design Temple creates which plays to cattle's own behaviors. She finds a way to make cattle willing to enter the dip because they feel safe. Ultimately, she figures out how to do the same for slaughterhouses, creating humane ways to herd the cattle right up until the moment they die. Throughout all her schooling, her high school science teacher, David Strathairn, supports her vision, describing every step of her journey as "another door to walk through". Visualizing walking through a door helps Temple actually do the next step in her career.