AI in Education, Part 1: AI and Workforce Development
Apr 11, 2024

AI in Education, Part 1: AI and Workforce Development


Episode Notes

As artificial intelligence tools have become far more accessible in the past year, “AI” has become a major conversation for not just schools and education but in all aspects of life. That’s why we’re diving into discussions about AI in education in this four-part series with guest host Dr. Chad Gestson, executive director of the Arizona Institute for Education and the Economy, and Dr. LeeAnn Lindsey, strategic planning director of the Arizona Institute for Education and the Economy.


In this episode, Dr. Gestson and Dr. Lindsey set the stage about how they became personally interested in this work, the discussions they’ve heard across Arizona, and why the new Arizona Institute for Education and the Economy is focusing on AI.


Dr. Gestson also gives an overview of how AI came to be where it is today, where it’s going, and what that can mean for Arizona schools and workplace development. Alan Turing published the first significant paper on AI in 1950, launching a focus on this new field before it entered an “AI winter.” Then, an influx of new AI tools and robots launched in the 2000s and has continued momentum. He also references the seven stages of artificial intelligence and talks about four branches of AI that listeners should be aware of: 

  • generative AI tools like ChatGPT

  • Natural language processing like Alexa, Siri, or other smart speakers

  • AI-powered robotics like Roombas

  • Robotics process automation like Timely for creating school master schedules


Vince Yanez, the Helios Education Foundation’s senior vice president of community engagement and strategic partnerships, then joins the podcast to discuss the role of AI in workforce development. He and Dr. Gestson discuss how AI will eliminate or alter some jobs while also introducing new jobs. They also discuss what it looks like to prepare students in the midst of this emerging future.


Subscribe to 3Ps in a Pod: An Education Podcast on your favorite podcast app to be ready for the next episodes in this series.

Learn more about the Arizona K12 Center at

Arizona K12 Center


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