College-level writing differs significantly from the writing expectations of most high school students. First-year seminars enable new students to understand the higher-level expectations of academic work. The Writing Center is a resource that equips students with the skills necessary for effective communication in the liberal arts setting. They include composition, grammar, presentation, and research skills. The training provided to tutors and staff equips them with the competencies to meet the educational needs of students at various levels. This session will explore the effectiveness of first-year seminars, challenges faced by first-year students, available academic support services, student use of resources, and obstacles to optimal resource utilization. Additionally, the session will highlight how writing centers improve students’ learning experiences and strengthen student-centered interdepartmental initiatives at the American University of Central Asia and the American University of Nigeria. The in-depth session in breakout groups will examine the nature of first-year transitional programs at other American-style institutions and how partnerships with writing centers can promote ethical scholarship, foster independent learning, and provide opportunities for writing mentorship in low-resource environments.