Black returns to University after planned exit

By Dasha Vinogradsky

University registrar Thomas Black will remain at the U of C, despite announcing last spring that he would take a new position as registrar at the University of California–Irvine.

“In the end, my potential employer and I could not work out a satisfactory housing situation, and my family and I were not willing to make this move and encounter the incredibly high cost of living in California and Orange County,” said Black, who returns to the same position that he left.

Black had hoped to capitalize on a University of California program that enables faculty and staff to buy on-campus houses below market rates.

“In my case, the [registrar] position qualified for the housing benefit, and we thought we would be able to move into a home shortly after arrival, which we found out was not possible,” Black said.

Leslie Millerd Rogers, a spokesperson for UC–Irvine Vice Chancellor Manuel N. Gomez, said in an e-mail that Black “informed UC–Irvine that he would remain at University of Chicago for personal reasons.”

“To my mind, the University of Chicago is such a wonderful place: its people, its location, and its traditions, that everything at this new location had to fall into place to make leaving the University of Chicago attractive,” Black said.

Since becoming registrar in 2002, Black has worked to integrate Internet technology with student registration, grades, and transcripts. He helped implement Web-based resources such as cMore.

“I believe his knowledge and implementation of new technology will improve the overall advancement of both the Registrar’s Office and the University,” said Patricia Chancellor, assistant registrar and business manager in the Registrar’s Office.

The University Registrar’s Office is responsible for maintaining student academic records, scheduling classes and assigning classrooms, assisting faculty and staff with administering registration, and grading.

Black said he plans to automate the application process for graduation and provide electronic transcripts for faster and more efficient service in the upcoming school year.

“There is plenty to do and plan for, so I am very happy to return to these projects and see them through,” Black said.