The NCCU Board of Trustees made the announcement at a meeting Wednesday.
School leaders said they'll try to ease the pain by not filling 38 vacant positions, but 17 full-time employees will get word in the first week of May that they will be let go as part of what the university is calling a "strategic realignment."
NCCU Chancellor Debra Saunders-White called the move a proactive step to keep the school viable.
"We have to be strategic of our evaluation of our services and our student outcomes," said Saunders-White. "This is not a comment about our viability. It's a comment about ability to thrive."
NCCU is following the lead of other UNC System schools that have shed jobs in recent months thanks to budget cuts.