I would say having a college degree, in and of itself, neither makes one smarter or more skilled. I think it is more accurate to say that having a college degree makes one more, shall we say, ..... formally licensed.
As you know, Earl S. Wynn, the bachelor's degree has been, for a long time, considered a kind of gateway document into a certain strata of employment -- employment which people without degrees could do just as well, in some cases better than those people with degrees. You know, until a few years ago, Oprah Winfrey had achieved all that she had (the journalism career in Chicago, the talk show which became an intergalactic phenomena, the magazine, the books, movies, adn so forth) without completing her undergraduate degree.
On the other hand, it also depends on what you want to do. The state authorities are just not going to let you be a second grade teacher without a bachelor's degree and a certification (even though such people with these qualifications are not always the best suited to the profession).
So having a college degree makes you formally licensed for a certain strata of employment, not "smarter" or "more skilled," to my way of thinking.