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Alyah Chanelle Scott On Success, Imposter Syndrome, & ‘SLOCG’ Season 3

Alyah Chanelle Scott may play a student-athlete struggling to find her place at school on HBO Max’s The Sex Lives of College Girls, but in real life, the Houston-raised 26-year-old has already found so much success in her career — as well as confidence in herself. Now, she’s ready to pass what she’s learned along to the next generation of college girls.

Scott is best known for her role as Whitney Chase in SLOCG, but she’s also wildly accomplished behind the scenes. She is the executive producer of the three-time Tony Award-winning theater company Runyonland Productions (which just won its latest Tony for Best Play Revival for its production of Appropriate on June 16) and a 2024 Forbes 30 Under 30 recipient in the Hollywood and entertainment category. Additionally, Scott directed two music videos for her SLOCG co-star — and pop megastar — Reneé Rapp, “Snow Angel,” and “Talk Too Much.”  

On June 22, Scott was a keynote speaker at Her Conference 2024 in New York City, captivating audiences with her radiant energy and candid takes on what it’s like having imposter syndrome in college, being underestimated as a woman of color, and the importance of having mentors. Moderated by entertainment writer and content creator Felicia Fitzpatrick, Scott’s keynote was full of encouragement to the hundreds of college students in attendance to take pride in the work they’re doing and to not be afraid to challenge themselves by stepping outside their comfort zones. TBH, it felt like the big sister advice so many college students needed to hear. 

Before Scott took to the stage, Her Campus sat down with her for an exclusive interview to chat about her own experience as a college student, her journey to where she is today, and, of course, some fresh SLOCG tea. 

Was there a pivotal moment in your life when you decided you wanted to be an actor?

I think it’s always been where my interest lies. I was a very annoying kid; I was always at family functions bugging people trying to perform for them. I’m from Texas and every year, they cut the funding for the theater program, so I was never exposed to theater; my parents weren’t art people so they never took me to the theater. It wasn’t until I got to high school when I first saw a musical; it was Footloose. I remember being so jealous that I was not in it, almost like FOMO, and it was that feeling that made me realize I have to be doing this.  

You received your BFA from the University of Michigan. what were you like as a college student?

The first year was like shell shock; I just couldn’t believe I was there. Very quickly I realized how intense that arts program is. Somehow I got into the top musical theater school and was near other kids there that had been trained actors. Some of them had been on Broadway, some had coaches that they hired. I very much felt like an underdog, but during sophomore year my acting professor was like, “No, you’re meant to do this; stick with it and commit,” and that’s what I did. 

Now at 26, you are a three-time Tony winner. How have these accolades influenced your perspective on theater and your career?

If anything it affirmed how much of a community it is. Whereas in the past I kind of felt like an outsider, this year I was like, “These are my colleagues and friends and people who have helped us and our little company get here.”   

You recently posted on Instagram with an update about SLOCG wrapping up production for Season 3. Can you hint at what’s to come in the new episodes?

We’re getting some new cast members this season, which is really exciting. [It’s] very indicative of what happens as you go through college and your friend group gets larger and larger; the new cast brings a really fun energy to the season. As far as Whitney, she’s got a lot to deal with externally and internally that I don’t think she’s had to deal with yet up until this point. So we’ll watch her process and deal with all effects of the situations that she’s been in.

Fans of the show were sad to hear Reneé Rapp is stepping down as a SLOCG series regular, but since you two are close friends and collaborators, is there any chance you two will work together on something else soon?

I’m very happy for her; she’s doing things that she’s always wanted to do, so getting to cheer her on and root for her is amazing. We’re always talking about things we’re doing, and we’re always in each other’s corners, but I don’t know. We’ll see what happens.

What exciting short-term and long-term goals do you have on the horizon for your career?

There’s an indie series that I did, Cooper Raiff’s new series called Hal & Harper that should be coming out this year. I play Lili Reinhart’s long-term girlfriend and it’s a very dramatic family drama, but it’s so fun and I loved getting to play a queer character. I’ve never done that before but it was a fun experience. I’m very excited for people to see it.

What do you hope the audience will take away from your Her Conference keynote?

I don’t want it to seem like I’m speaking from a place of having all the information. I think if anything, I want people to realize that you don’t have to have all the answers to start. I think a big ethos of my company and me as a person is I lead with transparency and I’ve only been able to get to where I am because of mentors and friends. It’s not some big mystery, it’s just asking the right questions.

Starr Washington is a member of the Her Campus National Writer Program, contributing to the lifestyle vertical. She also serves as the President of the Her Campus Chapter at her university. Currently a senior at San Francisco State University, Starr is pursuing a degree in Broadcast Electronic Communication Arts (BECA) with a minor in Africana Studies. Following her undergraduate studies, she plans to pursue an MFA in creative writing. Starr is dedicated to showcasing her blackness in her professional work and is always rooting for black creatives, particularly in film, literature, and travel. In addition to her writing, Starr works at her university’s multicultural center, where she organizes annual events for both the campus and the Bay Area community. She was a speaker at the San Francisco State University Black Studies Origins and Legacy Commemoration, where she had the honor of sitting alongside the founders of the country's first Black Student Union. Starr teaches a course she developed called “Intro to Black Love” within SFSU’s experimental college program. In her rare free time, Starr enjoys chipping away at her TBR list (she finishes one book, then adds three more to the list), writing poetry and fiction, and spending time with her music enthusiast partner and their three-year-old German Shepherd. She is a Scorpio from Michigan.