Rice Elementary School invited male Greenwood professionals to read holiday books to students Thursday morning as part of Real Men Read, which encourages college and career readiness.

Professionals read Christmas-themed literature to different classrooms, and after the reading, students asked questions about that professional’s occupation.

Among the participants were Greenwood police officers, District 50 board chairman Lee Vartanian and District 50 spokesman Johnathan L. Graves.

“We just want good role models for children to instill a love of reading, writing and literacy,” Rice Elementary Literacy Coach Emmy Evans said. “Reading is something important, even after you are grown.”

“One day, they will be adults out in the community, and hopefully they will reciprocate and come back,” said Rice Elementary School guidance counselor Nancy Newlon. “It’s just another way to share the love of reading and role models for our children outside the walls of school.”

Contact reporter Jonathan Limehouse at 864-943-5644 or follow him on twitter @jon_limehouse.