Have you ever wondered what happened to the popular kids at your high school or college? Did their final choice of profession and status in life warrant their boastful behavior? Or, are you interested in re-kindling a friendship with someone you were close to at school – perhaps even an old flame?
Whatever your reason for becoming interested, there are many ways that you can find out more about members of your past and the method you use to find them will depend upon your personal preference. In this article, we run you through a few possible choices available.
Due to the advancement of modern technology, the internet has become the perfect place for us to track down people that we once knew. Google and Yahoo are amongst the many search engines available to use, and these are both capable of helping us find names that we once knew.
The good thing about search engines is that they provide a list of options in various forms. It is, therefore, often possible for us to change the format of the search results to return a series of photos with the name we have searched for. If the person being searched for has appeared on a website, there is a good chance that a photo will appear when we click on images (though this depends on the commonality of the name.)
Subscription Sites and Software
Before social media became so popular, there were many different subscription sites and pieces of software available that helped us track down people we once knew. Many of these sites were advertised online or on televisions, and they helped us find people we once knew.
Although social media has taken away much of the business that subscription sites used to enjoy, some sites are still trading, specifically designed to helping us find people we once knew.
One of the most (if not the most) popular ways to track down an old college classmate, is via social media. Many of us will already be friends with people we used to attend college with on Facebook or Twitter, and it is often not difficult to find others by clicking through friends of friends. Alternatively, there is also a search screen that appears at the top of both Facebook and Twitter that enables users to search for the name of the person we are searching for directly. The intelligence of these social media sites even links us directly to people that we know through other people, almost instantly.
Unbeknown to many people, public records are readily available to people via the internet through a variety of different sites. Records Finder, for example, contains one of the largest and most comprehensive collection of records in a database, containing over 2 billion records. Amongst these records are criminal records, civil records and driving records; all of these could shed some light on the person you are searching for and their history. Perhaps if they had a colorful record whilst you were at college, that trend has continued as they have progressed into adulthood?!
Depending on the reason why you are searching, you could choose to try and use the registration records for the state in which you are searching.
There are various forms of media which will help you to search for old college friends. The media targets as wide a population as it possibly can, so it is possible to benefit from this coverage by advertising through different media types.
Newspapers, for example, will sometimes help you track people down. This could be both at a local and national level – sending messages in advertisements or other parts of the paper. If you are lucky, you might even be able to get onto a television show, tracking down past friends whilst turning yourself into somewhat of a celebrity!
High school Alumni Sites
When looking for anything or anyone, the source of the subject is often the best place to start. This could also be a good option when looking for an old classmate. Depending on the college you attended, they might have access to the person for whom you are searching.
You could try going into the college, or calling them directly to try and see if you can gain access to their records. Colleges or high schools often have websites, some of which have separate alumni sections to help you get in touch with former students. If you are unable to find the subject via other methods, it would certainly be worth contacting the college to see if they can help.
Though this may seem quite extreme under general circumstances, if you are desperate to get hold of a college classmate, a private investigator is probably in the best position to help you track them down. Highly skilled at finding people who seem to have disappeared, a private investigator often has access to resources that members of the general public do not even know about. Choosing this option could be very costly, and it is recommended that they only be used in desperate situations.
Friends of Friends
If you are friends with other people who also attended your old college, it is often possible to get help from them. Though the subject of your search may not be available on social media, asking your friends face-to-face can yield successful results.
It is sometimes extremely difficult to track down old college friends. However, by using one of the above methods, it is possible – especially with the options available through the internet. Before conducting a search, it might be wise to consider if the person you are searching for might be married (and have therefore changed their surname), or if they have passed away. In addition to these considerations, it can also be productive to write down a list of everything you remember about them prior to searching. Going into a search with this information can produce the most successful results.
Whichever method you choose, we wish you the best of luck.