Best Associate Programs in South Carolina

An associate degree can be an ideal first step toward a four-year degree. An associate degree can also enhance a person’s career prospects. South Carolina associate degrees generally cost less than four-year degrees. To graduate, you’ll need two years or less.

Associate degree-holders in South Carolina often make more money than those with just a high school diploma. There are 2,067,330 workers in South Carolina who earn an average of $37,250 a year, or $17.91 per hour. South Carolina’s bottom earners earn $21,620, while the state’s highest earners earn $79,680.

Find South Carolina’s best schools for associate degrees by exploring the ranking below. You can use it to decide which program best suits your needs.

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you can make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering transparent, inclusive, and relevant school rankings.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our ranking methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

Showing 30 schools

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    Avg Tuition per YearTuition is the price you pay to attend classes. Tuition varies by school, and does not include costs associated with room and board, books, school supplies, meal plans, or transportation.

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    #1

    Columbia International University

    Columbia, SC

    Graduation Rate

    68%

    Enrollment

    2,098

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $23550

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $23550

    Located in Columbia, South Carolina, Columbia International University enrolls students as a private institution. The school offers academic and technical programs to help learners reach their educational goals. During a bachelor's degree, students take lower-division and upper-division coursework. Enrollees also complete general education credits. Upper-division requirements focus on advanced concepts within a major. Learners benefit from support services like tutoring and career counseling. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. Learners at the accredited institution qualify for federal aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The school holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #2

    Bob Jones University

    Greenville, SC

    Graduation Rate

    65%

    Enrollment

    3,029

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $19288

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $19288

    Bob Jones University grants degrees as a private institution from its location in Greenville, South Carolina. Learners learn from experts in multiple disciplines. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The school's cost per credit is unknown. At the accredited institution, degree-seekers qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. At the institution, 96% of students receive financial aid and 29% take out loans. Learners graduate from the school at a rate of 65%. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Applicants can reach out to the admission department to learn more about enrolling. Bob Jones University holds accreditation from the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools, an independent accrediting body.

    #3

    Southern Wesleyan University

    Central, SC

    Graduation Rate

    54%

    Enrollment

    1,345

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $24926

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $24926

    From its campus in Central, South Carolina, Southern Wesleyan University grants degrees as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the institution helps students reach their career goals. Bachelor's programs incorporate lower-division and upper-division requirements. Students also complete general education credits. Upper-division requirements emphasize advanced concepts in the major. Learners benefit from support services, which include tutoring and career counseling. Data on the school's average cost per credit is currently unavailable. Learners attending the accredited school also qualify for federal financial aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Southern Wesleyan University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #4

    University of South Carolina-Columbia

    Columbia, SC

    Graduation Rate

    78%

    Enrollment

    35,470

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $12288

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $33528

    University of South Carolina-Columbia, located in Columbia, South Carolina, operates as a public institution. Learners study with experts in many different fields. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 94% of students receive financial aid and 44% take out loans. The public institution reports a 78% graduation rate. Prospective enrollees can expect an 68% admission rate. Applicants can reach out to the admission department to learn more about enrolling. University of South Carolina-Columbia is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #5

    Spartanburg Methodist College

    Spartanburg, SC

    Graduation Rate

    48%

    Enrollment

    1,051

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $15750

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15750

    From its campus in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Spartanburg Methodist College educates students as a private institution. Enrollees complete programs that prepare them for the workforce. Degree-seekers benefit from academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. Multiple programs at the school appear in national rankings. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. As an accredited institution, degree-seekers qualify for federal student aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners choose from academic and technical programs. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Spartanburg Methodist College holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #6

    Fortis College-Columbia

    Columbia, SC

    Graduation Rate

    49%

    Enrollment

    569

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $13938

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $13938

    From its campus in Columbia, South Carolina, Fortis College-Columbia awards degrees and certificates as a private institution. Degree-seekers study with experts in many different fields. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. Data on the school's average cost per credit is currently unavailable. At the accredited school, enrollees qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. The institution reports that 96% of students receive aid, and 68% receive loans. The private school reports a graduation rate of 49%. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. Prospective applicants can contact the admission department for more information about applying. The school is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools.

    #7

    Aiken Technical College

    Graniteville, SC

    Graduation Rate

    26%

    Enrollment

    1,925

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4896

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6408

    A public institution, Aiken Technical College grants degrees and certificates from its campus in Graniteville, South Carolina. Students learn from experts in multiple disciplines. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 99% of learners receive financial aid, while 18% take out loans. Learners graduate from the school at a rate of 26%. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Contact the admissions department for more details about application requirements. Aiken Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #8

    Limestone University

    Gaffney, SC

    Graduation Rate

    33%

    Enrollment

    1,943

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $25200

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $25200

    From its Gaffney, South Carolina campus, Limestone University enrolls students in 58 programs. Degree-seekers enroll in rigorous, top-ranked programs at the school. The school reports a 13-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. According to the the school's reports, 100% of its students receive financial assistance. The school reports a 33% graduation rate. Job seekers often benefit from hands-on experience, which makes them more competitive job candidates. The admission rate is 68%. Some students qualify for test-optional admissions. Prospective applicants can contact the admission department for more information about applying.

    #9

    Spartanburg Community College

    Spartanburg, SC

    Graduation Rate

    28%

    Enrollment

    4,108

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5880

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $9672

    From its campus in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Spartanburg Community College grants degrees and certificates as a top school. Students learn from experts in multiple disciplines. With academic and technical tracks, the programs help students reach a variety of career goals. Academic programs generally take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete depending on degree or certificate type. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. A test score waiver makes it easier to apply. Admission advisors can provide more information on the application process. Degree-seekers also use financial aid to cover their educational costs. Spartanburg Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #10

    Greenville Technical College

    Greenville, SC

    Graduation Rate

    12%

    Enrollment

    10,536

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4824

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $9048

    Greenville Technical College, located in Greenville, South Carolina, enrolls students in 107 programs. Students choose from rigorous, top-ranked programs at the school. The school provides a student-to-faculty ratio of 14-to-1. The institution reports that of its total enrollees, 95% receive financial aid. The school reports a graduation rate of 12%. Real-world experience helps candidates stand out on the job market. We do not currently have data on the school's admission rate. Some students qualify for test-optional admissions. Applicants can reach out to the admission department to learn more about enrolling.

    #11

    Tri-County Technical College

    Pendleton, SC

    Graduation Rate

    32%

    Enrollment

    5,582

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5600

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $10016

    A public institution located in Pendleton, South Carolina, Tri-County Technical College educates students through multiple programs. The school offers accredited programs that prepare learners for the workforce. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. Multiple programs at the school appear in national rankings. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. Students attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Students receive $7342 in aid on average, lowering the average tuition cost after aid to $8603. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the institution. The school offers foundational courses, technical classes, and general education courses in multiple majors. Tri-County Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #12

    Trident Technical College

    Charleston, SC

    Graduation Rate

    18%

    Enrollment

    11,650

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5024

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $8571

    Trident Technical College, located in Charleston, South Carolina, welcomes students with 101 program options. Students enjoy rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. The school boasts a 20-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. The school reports that 94% of students take advantage of financial aid. Learners graduate from the school at a rate of 18%. Experiential learning opportunities help graduates on the job market. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs no longer require test scores for admission. Admissions advisors can provide more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #13

    Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College

    Orangeburg, SC

    Graduation Rate

    23%

    Enrollment

    2,257

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5544

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $7320

    Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College, which is often listed among the best schools, operates from its main campus in Orangeburg, South Carolina. Instructors draw on their expertise in diverse fields. With academic and technical tracks, the school's programs help students meet their professional goals. Typical time for program completion ranges from a few months to seven years depending on the type of degree or certificate offered. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The admissions staff can provide more information on the process. Degree-seekers also use financial aid to cover their educational costs. Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #14

    Columbia College

    Columbia, SC

    Graduation Rate

    66%

    Enrollment

    1,218

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $17791

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $17791

    A private institution located in Columbia, South Carolina, Columbia College enrolls students in several programs. Graduates leave the school prepared for the workforce. Learners enroll in academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. The school offers nationally ranked programs in diverse fields. The cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Based on their major, students take foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Columbia College holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #15

    Central Carolina Technical College

    Sumter, SC

    Graduation Rate

    18%

    Enrollment

    2,885

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $6354

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $8776

    Central Carolina Technical College, located in Sumter, South Carolina, offers 56 programs for students. Learners benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. According to the school, the student-to-faculty ratio stands at 14-to-1. The school reports that 95% of students take advantage of financial aid. The school reports a graduation rate of 18%. Experiential learning opportunities help graduates on the job market. The institution's admission rate is currently unknown. Some applicants qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Admissions advisors can provide more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #16

    York Technical College

    Rock Hill, SC

    Graduation Rate

    25%

    Enrollment

    4,178

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4776

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $9720

    Located in Rock Hill, South Carolina, York Technical College awards degrees and certificates as a public institution. Enrollees take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 93% of students receive financial aid and 21% take out loans. The public institution reports a 25% graduation rate. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. The admission department can provide more information about application requirements and start dates. York Technical College holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #17

    Northeastern Technical College

    Cheraw, SC

    Graduation Rate

    27%

    Enrollment

    1,465

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4460

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $7222

    Located in Cheraw, South Carolina, Northeastern Technical College educates students as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their educational goals. Students strengthen their knowledge of the field by completing coursework. Applicants may qualify for a test score waiver. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. Data on the school's average cost per credit is currently unavailable. Learners at the accredited school qualify for federal student aid programs. Northeastern Technical College has been accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #18

    Horry-Georgetown Technical College

    Conway, SC

    Graduation Rate

    24%

    Enrollment

    6,409

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5088

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $8352

    Horry-Georgetown Technical College, a public organization located in Conway, South Carolina, offers multiple programs. Students leave the school with credentials that prepare them for the workplace. The institution's affordable programs provide a rigorous course of study. Several of the school's programs appear in national rankings. Information on the school's cost per credit is unavailable. As an accredited institution, degree-seekers qualify for federal student aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. The school reports that students receive an average aid award of $7487, making the average tuition cost after aid $4753. Learners at the institution choose from academic and technical programs. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Horry-Georgetown Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #19

    Clinton College

    Rock Hill, SC

    Graduation Rate

    8%

    Enrollment

    119

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $9920

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $9920

    Located in Rock Hill, South Carolina, Clinton College is a private institution that offers multiple programs. Students can earn a degree or certificate that prepares them for the workforce. The programs offer an academically rigorous course of study at an affordable price. Several of the school's programs appear in national rankings. The institution's average cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Students complete fundamentals courses, technical classes, and general education requirements depending on their program. Clinton College holds accreditation from the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools, an independent accrediting body.

    #20

    Florence-Darlington Technical College

    Florence, SC

    Graduation Rate

    17%

    Enrollment

    3,315

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4870

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6742

    Located in Florence, South Carolina, Florence-Darlington Technical College enrolls students as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their educational goals. Students prepare for a successful career by completing degree- or certificate-specific coursework. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. A waiver makes it easier to enroll. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Florence-Darlington Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #21

    Technical College of the Lowcountry

    Beaufort, SC

    Graduation Rate

    11%

    Enrollment

    2,119

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5400

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $10680

    Technical College of the Lowcountry, a public institution in Beaufort, South Carolina, enrolls learners in multiple programs. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares students for advancement in their field. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to enroll. Learners benefit from support services like tutoring and career counseling. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Technical College of the Lowcountry holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #22

    University of South Carolina Beaufort

    Bluffton, SC

    Graduation Rate

    34%

    Enrollment

    2,006

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $10344

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $21390

    University of South Carolina Beaufort, located in Bluffton, South Carolina, enrolls students as a public institution. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for a successful career. Data on the school's average cost per credit is currently unavailable. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 95% of students receive aid, and 61% receive loans. Degree-seekers graduate from the school at a rate of 34%. The admission rate is 67% for incoming students. Prospective students can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying. The school holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #23

    Williamsburg Technical College

    Kingstree, SC

    Graduation Rate

    16%

    Enrollment

    635

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4608

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $8400

    From its campus in Kingstree, South Carolina, Williamsburg Technical College enrolls students in programs as a public institution. The school offers programs that prepare learners for the workforce. Degree-seekers benefit from academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. Multiple programs at the school appear in national rankings. The cost per credit is unknown. As an accredited institution, degree-seekers qualify for federal student aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Students receive an average aid award of $6192, lowering the average tuition cost after aid to $7700. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Depending on their major, learners complete fundamentals courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #24

    Piedmont Technical College

    Greenwood, SC

    Graduation Rate

    24%

    Enrollment

    4,712

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5070

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6348

    Piedmont Technical College, a public organization located in Greenwood, South Carolina, offers multiple programs. The school's accredited programs prepare learners for the workforce. The institution's affordable programs provide a rigorous course of study. Multiple programs at the school appear in national rankings. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. Students attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Enrollees receive an average aid award of $7771, making the average tuition cost after aid $11626. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Piedmont Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #25

    South University-Columbia

    Columbia, SC

    Graduation Rate

    6%

    Enrollment

    732

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $16920

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $16920

    From its campus in South Carolina, South University-Columbia enrolls students in 30 programs. The institution's programs offer a rigorous course of study. The school holds a student-to-faculty ratio of 11-to-1. According to the institution, 100% of undergraduates receive some form of financial aid. The school reports a graduation rate of 6%. The institution understands that real-world experience helps job seekers enter the workforce. Learners participate in internships, research projects, and other forms of experiential learning. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option.

    #26

    Forrest College

    Anderson, SC

    Graduation Rate

    50%

    Enrollment

    Not Provided

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $9900

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $9900

    Forrest College, which is often listed among the best schools, operates from its main campus in Anderson, South Carolina. Students learn from experts in multiple disciplines. The school's academic and technical tracks help students meet diverse career goals. Typical time for program completion ranges from a few months to seven years depending on the type of degree or certificate offered. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Test-optional policies make it easier to enroll. The admissions department can help prospective students determine the next steps. At the accredited institution, students also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. The accreditation status of this school is unavailable.

    #27

    Midlands Technical College

    West Columbia, SC

    Graduation Rate

    12%

    Enrollment

    8,794

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5640

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $13536

    Located in West Columbia, South Carolina, Midlands Technical College grants college degrees as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares students for advancement in their field. Some programs may offer test-optional admission policies. Test-optional policies make it easier to apply. Learners benefit from support services, which include tutoring and career counseling. Data on the school's average cost per credit is currently unavailable. Learners attending the accredited school also qualify for federal financial aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Midlands Technical College has been accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #28

    Strayer University-South Carolina

    Greenville, SC

    Graduation Rate

    50%

    Enrollment

    2,806

    Format

    Online

    In-State Tuition

    $13320

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $13320

    Strayer University-South Carolina, located in Greenville, South Carolina, enrolls students in 31 programs. Students enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. The school reports a 28-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. The institution reports that 67% of students receive some form of financial aid. Students earn their degree from the school at a rate of 50%. Job seekers often benefit from hands-on experience, which makes them more competitive job candidates. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs no longer require standardized tests for admission. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #29

    University of South Carolina-Sumter

    Sumter, SC

    Graduation Rate

    30%

    Enrollment

    1,387

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7158

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $17838

    From its campus in Sumter, South Carolina, University of South Carolina-Sumter offers academic programs as a public institution. The school offers programs that prepare learners for the workforce. The institution offers academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. The school offers nationally ranked programs in diverse fields. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at this accredited institution may qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The school reports that students receive an average aid award of $7257, making the average tuition cost after aid $9949. The school offers both academic and technical programs. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. University of South Carolina-Sumter holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #30

    University of South Carolina-Lancaster

    Lancaster, SC

    Graduation Rate

    22%

    Enrollment

    1,810

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7158

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $17838

    University of South Carolina-Lancaster, located in Lancaster, South Carolina, operates as a public institution. Learners study with experts in many different fields. Students who complete a technical or academic program may enter the workforce. The cost per credit is unknown. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 97% of learners receive financial aid, while 19% take out loans. The school reports a 22% graduation rate. The admission rate is 75%. Admissions advisors can provide more information about application requirements and start dates. University of South Carolina-Lancaster holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.