How to Find Old Classmates: Get in Touch With These Tips

Cindy Ellis - May 24, 2023

group of students studying together

Whether you are searching for old friends you spent your high school years with or are looking to reconnect with members of your undergraduate or graduate class, finding an old classmate might seem difficult. After all, it could have been many years since you last saw your high school or college companions, and you might not know where to start this search process.

Fortunately, our article is here to help you understand the best methods for finding an old classmate so you can get your search started with ease.

Why Search for Old Classmates?

Reconnecting with old classmates is often a way for individuals to find those companions they used to be close with – it’s not uncommon to have close high school and college friends that eventually grow apart due to life circumstances and busy everyday routines.

Many people want to search for their old classmates so that they can continue to share their lives with the individuals they were once close with or reminisce on the memories of their time together in school. It’s also common to search for old classmates as part of organizing a reunion or other school-related event where the presence of alums plays an important part.

Best Methods for Finding an Old Classmate

The following methods for finding an old classmate are all easy ways to gather the information you know about an individual and use what you know to find the current whereabouts of an old classmate. Take your time trying the following methods, and be sure to give them all a shot, as you never know which method will give you the essential information you need.

1)   Yearbooks

Yearbooks are a great way to gather all of the information that you know about a person and the essential facts about them you can use to start your search. Yearbooks will list the full name of the person you are looking for along with helpful items such as their major in college, their intended college (if you are using a high school yearbook), and other pictures of clubs and activities they may have been involved in.

You can use all of the information gathered about someone from a yearbook to jog your memory of that person and collect vital facts, like their full name, to start researching using the other methods on this list.

It’s important to note that along with yearbooks, you may also want to gather old pictures and other mementos from your college or high school days, as these may serve as reminders of your joint activities and help to direct your search.

2)   Speak With Mutual Friends and Family

Mutual friends and family members who knew the person you’re searching for are great resources for finding an old classmate. Mutual friends and family may be able to give you information about where your old classmates live and work, and they may even be able to provide you with helpful contact information such as an email, a workplace, or a mailing address.

With this information, you can start your search for your old classmates and make any internet or social media search more accurate, as you will have additional updated information about your old classmates and their whereabouts.

3)   Use Social Media

Social media is ever-present in today’s world, and many individuals will put helpful identifying information on their profiles, such as the school they attended, where they live now, and their general life updates. You can consult popular social media websites such as Facebook, Instagram, and even LinkedIn to learn basic information about old classmates and discover helpful contact information.

Perform searches of social media websites by searching the name of the individual you want to find, their last known whereabouts, or their school. Sometimes, you can search for the person’s name and then add filters for their location and previously attended schools to make your search more accurate.

Remember that some social media networks require you to also have an account on the website so that you can access all of the site’s search features and that other websites may show that you have viewed someone’s profile. If you are trying to keep your search more subtle because you are deciding whether or not to reach out to your old classmate, you may want to search with a social media site that doesn’t have this feature.

4)   Contact Alumni Services

Alumni services are typically available in colleges, especially those that have large undergraduate classes. Alumni records are kept so the school can contact these individuals, and as part of donation drives where the college will reach out to previous graduates for charitable donations. So if you are searching for an old classmate you attended college with, you may be able to get their basic contact information from alumni services. You can reach out and give the person’s name, and alumni services will help direct your search as much as they can.

5)   Use a People Search Tool

People search tools are a convenient way to figure out an old classmate’s contact information without spending hours searching social media or looking through old boxes of items for yearbooks and other mementos.

A people search engine will utilize public records to compile information about the name of the person you search, providing you with a complete report that includes essential information such as the person’s name, location, previous education and employment history, known friends and family members, and contact information such as emails and phone numbers.

You may utilize any of the information in this report to perform further searches or to reach out and contact an old classmate, saving you time and giving you a direct way to access your old classmate’s contact information.

Tips About Finding Old Classmates

Now that you know how to find old classmates, you might still have some lingering wonderings. Below are some more tips for finding an old classmate.

What’s the Best Way To Approach an Old Classmate?

If you have successfully obtained an old classmate’s contact information, you may be wondering what the best way to reach out to your old classmate and break the ice. The best way to do this is by re-introducing yourself and saying something to jog your old classmate’s memory of who you are. From there, you can ask if they want to extend your conversation, or if you are doing this via social media or the internet, ask that they reach back out so you can make plans to meet up.

You should keep in mind that regardless of how polite you are when you approach an old classmate, they may not want to reconnect or catch up with you. Be sure to respect their wishes and don’t push the matter if they aren’t interested in rekindling the type of relationship you shared in high school or college.

Will I See My Old Classmates at a Reunion?

Many individuals think that they can simply connect with their old classmates at a reunion, but this may not be the case. If you are interested in getting back in contact with a certain person, using the methods in our article is your best first step rather than waiting for a reunion. Reunions may not take place, depending on the school, the person you are interested in connecting with may not show up to the reunion, or you may not be able to find them at the reunion if the crowd of people attending is large enough.

In cases like these, having your old classmate’s contact information ahead of time will give you the best chance of reconnecting and meeting up with them whenever it is time for a reunion of your high school or college graduating class.

Staying in Contact With Your Former Classmates

Staying in contact with your former classmates or finding an old classmate is often something that many individuals are interested in. After all, you’ve fostered a relationship with your friends throughout high school or college, and you are no doubt interested in where life took them after you parted ways and became busy with your respective goals. The methods in our article will help you research your former classmates and find their contact information so you can reach out and get started reconnecting with your old high school or college classmates.

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