FORT MYERS, Fla. -- A WINK News exclusive. Dr. Steve Atkins, the fired Edison State College administrator, reveals shocking new details in the school scandal. In a one-on-one interview with WINK News, Atkins handed over a voice mail. He says it proves President Dr. Kenneth Walker was trying to downplay the fact that students were allowed to graduate without the proper credits.
For the first time since the board of trustees fired Dr. Atkins, he's talking only to WINK News. He says President Walker tried to change a report from an outside consultant to put the college in a better light.
"In the preliminary report, she refers to a culture of fear on the campus and she had quite a bit to say about a culture of fear," said Atkins.
Edison State and Atkins asked the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admission Officers (AACRAO) to look into allegations that students were allowed to graduate without taking the proper courses. In a voice mail to Atkins, the investigator says Walker wanted wording changed.
"In the exit interview, Dr. Walker asked me two things. Please do not use the word fear and thats fine, I can rephrase that. I want to be honest in the observations but I can talk about the lack of communication and he was comfortable with that," said Michele Sandlin, with AACRAO.
Atkins says Walker tried to downplay the course swap scandal and even offered the investigator a job at the college in exchange for a more favorable report.
"Early in the response she is stating that she talked to her supervisor and she said that AACRAO would provide a consulting service to the campus," said Atkins.
That contract never happened. On campus, students are concerned for the future.
"Am I wasting my money, my time, to come here and not have it be worth anything when I graduate in May?" said Emily Reed, student.
Can Edison recover from a course swap scandal and shake up on campus? Students want to move forward, Atkins believes it can happen.
"Do you think the college can recover from all this?" said Genevieve Judge, WINK News.
"It will, in time, it will certainly recover. Absolutely, there are too many good people for that not to happen," said Atkins.