Back in to the 70s, 80s and 90s when someone started to learn to make a living, a person is always taught that to go for a formal education is not a necessity. If your family couldn't afford you an education then at least you need to master a handcraft to provide value to earn a living.
To master a handcraft literally means to learn or pick a skill like repairing cars, being a mechanics or learning to be a cook starting by being an apprentice. Being an apprentice isn't going to be a bed of rose. The senior or gurus that took years to find out the finer part of a skills have very high regards for their own achievement and would not easily taught an apprentice the secrets of their skills. Apprentice would only be taught the skills if one is able to gain the trust of his gurus. Anyone who has attend a formal education at schools, college and best still at university are almost akin to tigers paired with wings. To make the long story short the mass are illiterate and if you're not you would have an asset that is precious.
Until the late 80s and into the 90s with the advent of Personal Computers and the Internet things have changed rapidly. Knowing how to operate a computer is no longer consider an assets but a norm and necessity that need not to be mentioned as special skill.
To cut the longer stories even shorter again, in today's world they are generally two groups of people with a very different mind set. The first group are people living today but having a mind set in their grand parents' time. The second group of people are those who work and lives in the Internet. The opportunities and possibilities Internet has brought are only limited to ones mind. Almost anything you want to know, it's possible to find the answers in the Internet.
So people, if you're reading this it's time to be aware of that we're in a transition into a knowledge society. Whatever secrets those old gurus learnt through trial and error throughout their entire live is available out there on the Internet.