Not at all. All an academic qualification gives you is the opportunity to be in skilled employment. It gives you a step up in life, for sure, but there are other ways to get that step up. A lot of employers value experience over qualification, and normal university doesn't give you experience. *shrugs* It's well worth getting a degree or some other tertiary training unless you want to go into a specific trade, but it's not the be-all and end-all.