Following in his footsteps

What does it mean to be a “Campbell Legacy?” In short, a “Legacy” is a student whose family member graduated from Campbell. But if you ask Bob Coats and Macie Price, to hold the Campbell Legacy title means much more.

Macie Price (’21) always dreamed of becoming a teacher; her grandmother and aunt were both teachers and she wanted to follow in their footsteps. Price graduated from Campbell’s School of Education in the Spring of 2021, one step closer to her dream. Her dream came true when she completed her student teaching at Four Oaks Elementary and secured a 3rd grade teaching position.

Before attending Campbell, Price was familiar with the university because of her grandfathers. Her maternal grandfather, Robert Coats (’56) graduated from Campbell and her paternal grandfather, Don Price, was on Campbell’s board of ministers in the 80s and 90s.

“It was an honor to follow in the footsteps of my grandfather and attend Campbell.

I have always had a special bond with him and growing up listening to his stories about his time at Campbell greatly influenced my decision to attend this wonderful university.”

In addition to her grandfather’s positive influence, Campbell’s small town feel drew her to the campus and she quickly found her place. Price developed many close friendships on campus that added to her experience. She also had encouraging professors who made her feel at home, including Drs. Chris Godwin, Amy Mattingly, Angela Vincent, and Olivia Wakefield. These professors frequently checked on her, made sure she understood material, and took the time to get to know her. She participated in Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) which led her to new friendships and helped her develop leadership skills. She also attended homecoming every year with her grandfather, Bob Coats.

Coats, whose sister, Kim (‘99) also followed in his Campbell footsteps, feels immense pride that his granddaughter carried on the Campbell legacy. “Nothing thrills a parent or grandparent more than a child or a grandchild following in their tradition.”

When Coats was young he experienced a house fire that injured his father. While at the hospital, a pastor (Rev. V.P. Locke) from a local church was called to be with the family. Coats and his family were so affected by this pastor that he became very involved in church. After Campbell, he went on to complete his education at Southeastern Seminary in 1966 with a Master of Divinity. He has now been in the ministry for 67 years this October, and currently serves a church in Raleigh.

Coats attended Campbell as a first generation college student. While at Campbell, he found encouragement and support from faculty including Drs. Charles Howard and Perry Langston, and Dean Jerry Burkot. In his words, “These professors knew and cared about me.” Dr. Howard took him “under his wing,” along with a small group of “preacher boy” students. He taught them what they needed to know about ministry and made it possible for the group to build their theological libraries with books he uses today to prepare sermons.

So, what does it mean to be a “Campbell Legacy?” It means following in the footsteps of the family who walked before you, connected through traditions, places, and the commonality of the Campbell experience. These connections offer a link to our past, a path to your future, and an invitation into the Campbell alumni family.

To learn more about the Campbell Legacy program, visit