Since 2014, Clara has published over 100 articles in Spectator. She uncovered that Barnard administrators had been aware of at least five years worth of formal complaints that the director of Barnard's Career Development Office created a toxic work environment for employees. She also led coverage of Barnard's controversial winter break housing policy, which only allowed for students such as varsity athletes and admissions tour guides to stay on campus over break. Following a series of articles on the issue, the college announced that it would reverse the policy for that winter.
Clara has also conducted and written two data-driven investigations of Columbia's compliance with a provision in the Higher Education Opportunity Act. The publication of the first article prompted the Provost to publicly compel faculty to comply with the law, and compliance rates increased by 20 percent a year after the first piece was published.
Last summer, she served as an editorial intern at TheWrap in Los Angeles, where she wrote over 100 articles about the entertainment industry, media, and politics. She investigated allegations of overtime abuse in the animation studio for Seth Rogen's 2016 film "Sausage Party."
Clara began studying the violin at the age of four with Li Lin and viola at the age of fifteen with Jodi Levitz at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Pre-College. She made her orchestral solo debut at age 11 as the winner of the Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra’s Concerto Competition. In the summer of 2014, she made her international solo debut in Courmayeur, Italy, where she performed the Rebecca Clarke Viola Sonata with pianist Mack McCray. She is the winner of the 2013 Northern California Viola Society Young Violists Competition and a prizewinner in the Chinese Music Teachers’ Association Competition.
Clara is an avid chamber and orchestral musician. She has performed in the Yehudi Menuhin Chamber Music Seminar, Music at Kohl Mansion, and Chamber Music Day at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. She has also participated in masterclasses with the Miró Quartet, the St. Lawrence Quartet, the Ying Quartet, the Alexander String Quartet, and more. In 2014, her quartet won the Galante Prize. From 2013-2014, she was the Associate Principal Violist of the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra (SFSYO). As a member of SFSYO, she went on the 2012 European Tour and performed in locations such as Berlin, Munich, Salzburg, and more. A recording of the SFSYO performing Mahler's Symphony No. 1 at the Berlin Philharmonie is available on the San Francisco Symphony label. She currently serves as the principal violist of the Columbia University Orchestra.
Clara has also performed benefit concerts for Broadway by the Bay; the Museum of Music Making in San Diego, honoring Ravi Shankar; and the San Francisco Symphony Auxiliary. She has appeared on the KTSF 26 Evening News, BBC World News, and the K11 Art Mall in Hong Kong. She has also participated in the Music@Menlo Chamber Music Festival and Institute, the Aspen Music Festival and School, and the Zephyr International Chamber Music Festival in Italy. She can be found in a YouTube video with her brother, cellist Nathan Chan, performing a duo that currently has over half a million views.
She currently studies with Karen Ritscher as a member of the Barnard-Manhattan School of Music exchange program.