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Cambridge Community Television moved across Central Square to its Massachusetts Avenue location in July 2011. (Photo: CCTV)

Cambridge Community Television moved across Central Square to its Massachusetts Avenue location in July 2011. (Photo: CCTV)

Cambridge Community Television is opening its classes to non-members for the first time, with the change arriving Wednesday with the new year.

It’s the first change in the membership fee structure since 2000, Executive Director Susan Fleischmann said Tuesday. The change lets non-Cambridge residents enroll in media production classes – albeit at a higher, non-member rate – something “they could not do at all before.”

Fleischmann

Fleischmann

“CCTV believes in empowering all people with the tools they need to produce media and have their voices heard. In making our classes accessible to everyone, including nonmembers, we are opening up the doors to everyone seeking a community in which to learn new skills and be creative,” Fleischmann said.

The move is not entirely altruistic. Fleischmann and CCTV’s 13-member board are counting on the classes bringing in more money to pay the rent in the Central Square space it moved into in July 2011, run its various services and program local cable channels 8, 9 and 96.

“This is definitely a financial decision. Our costs have gone up significantly with the new space and [there have been] just general increases,” Fleischmann said Monday.

But the move allows more people access to CCTV knowledge and equipment without hurting Cambridge residents, who next year will have class options ranging from $5 to $90 – higher than  this year, but with a membership voucher increase to $300 from $100 so members can still get classes for free with a $75 membership. (There are also waivers for residents who can’t afford a membership or class fee.) The cost of classes for non-members range from $10 to $240.

There are also full Access Memberships for Cambridge residents for $75 a year (or $35 for seniors, kids and volunteers); $35 Affiliate Memberships that let anyone submit programming with a Cambridge resident sponsor, use computer drop-in time and rent equipment; and Organizational Memberships for organizations in or serving Cambridge for $50 to $500.

Along with offering classes teaching how to use high-definition video cameras, edit in Final Cut Pro X software and produce in a television studio, CCTV is adding classes on journalism, making comedy videos and producing short segments for a TV news magazine, according to a Monday press release. A full schedule is at cctvcambridge.org/learn.

“The classes and workshops at CCTV are truly remarkable, taught by extremely skilled and talented media-makers and educators who bring with them a breadth of knowledge, experience and expertise of the highest caliber,” said training coordinator Allison Maria Rodriguez in the press release. “The quality of our courses could easily compete with similar but costlier offerings at well-known colleges and universities in the Boston area.”

There is a 6:30 p.m. Jan. 6 orientation and studio tour for anyone wishing to learn more about its classes, membership and production opportunities. The event is free and open to the public. CCTV is at 438 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. Call (617) 661-6900.