Dr Chan has an interesting career as an academic, economic advisor, and entrepreneur. He is Co-Founder, Vice Chancellor and President of HELP (Higher Education Learning Philosophy) University in Malaysia, and is also Co-Founder of HELP International Corporation.
Driven by his desire to make tertiary education readily available to Malaysians, Chan and his wife, Datin Low Kam Yoke, started HELP in 1986. The higher learning centre first started business with only two classrooms and some 30 students in Kuala Lumpur, offering the BSc Economics external program from the University of London.
Since then, HELP has grown into a large-scale education business operating locally and overseas with over 15,000 students. HELP was able to carve out its niche by offering external and twinning programmes, which worked out to be a lower-cost option for individuals seeking overseas accredited university degrees. HELP attained the "University College Status" by the Malaysian Government in 2004.
As an entrepreneur, he has been involved in different roles in the corporate sector. He has been director of public companies and has founded and managed several private enterprises.
For his contribution to education, Dr Chan was awarded the Panglima Jasa Negara (P.J.N) by the King of Malaysia. This grants him the title of Datuk.
In December 2011 he represented HELP to receive the 2011 Forbes Award for the top 200 Asia Pacific companies below US$ 1 billion. He is also a recipient of the Education Innovation Award given by the World Education Congress (2012).
Dr Chan is a member of Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) Australia and the Malaysian National Higher Education Council. In addition Dr Chan is also appointed by the Chinese Service Center for Scholarly Exchange to be a member of Study Abroad Training Centers Quality Assurance Counselling Panel. He is also advisor to several educational institutions in China, US and Australia.
For his contributions to education he has received honorary doctoral degrees from British and Australian universities. He is also a member of the ANU College of Business & Economics Alumni Hall of Fame.